Y10 – 18/01/17

Due: 24/01 (Issued: 18/01)

Title: Creative Writing

Task: Imagine the rock singer, PJ Harvey (Google her), up on stage. Place her in a scene showing her coming onto stage and her conflict between external attitude and internal doubt, because she knows… (a) her partner has just dumped her, or (b) this is her last performance before early retirement.

  • Make use of figurative techniques
  • Bring the scene to life, engaging with the description
  • Show external attitude through action and behaviour
  • Show internal attitude through external actions and behaviours as well as internal thoughts


  • Write at least half a page
  • Edit yourself: highlighting ineffective words, poor phrasing and locations where figurative devices can be used to emphasise imagery and engage action and description together

Mr Howse’s Example – Swansong

A single v-sign to the huddle and she departs, tearing herself away from the tears and toasting arms to the stairs that lead her – one last time – to the stage. They’ve chanted their last prayers together and now, as she collects up the Gibson Firebird and slings it over her head, elbowing it beneath her arm like a lance, she thumbs the strings for luck and exhales one long, outward breath.

Their dark twang is as nothing beneath the tumultuous din from across the horizon which halts her ascent.

In that moment she thinks of turning to the faces at her back but the throaty strum of the lead guitar from across stage begins to make its call and she instinctively draws herself up to full height and casts away the concerns that seem set to make her cry.

A roar goes up.

She palms the sheen of tears from her eyes, flicks back the curls in the flock of her raven tresses and struts onto the stage. She kicks forward in her calf-length boots with a shouldered swagger that takes the lead over the rhythm of the – now – guitars. And beneath their grungy chime the medals and paraphernalia that litter her vest and pants, jingle and jangle to the beat. Before her, upon the sea of the crowd she spies a number of arms raising high as if erupting from the swaying surf and she twitches one cheek into a wry smile.

Throwing up one hand upon the microphone she sets her chin against its head, shuts out the endless waves, draws forward the Firebird and feels herself begin to rise with her first lyric.

“He’s seen me,” she calls, rolling herself from the mic, “so clearly.”

One step. Two step. Her feet sashay a simple salsa that swings her to and fro. “Come over.”

She’s got this.