Week 3-Writing Workshop

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Sky Alton
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Week 3-Writing Workshop

Postby Sky Alton » Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:00 am

Clarabella Tangleweed, prolific author and darling of the wizarding literary scene, strides into the Writer’s Workshop, her amethyst silk cloak billowing behind her. She walks the length of the room three times, claps her hands and comes to a swirling stop at the centre. You wait eagerly for your literary hero to speak her first words of wisdom.
“A broken falcon quill, two sickles, a peppermint toad and a scrap of parchment.”
You stare at her in blank disbelief.

Clarabella isn’t crazy. She’s introducing you to a clever technique for devising a character. Start with a list of random items (5 is plenty) someone might carry in their pocket. Then, take each item in turn and think about what it says about that person (you might even include the garment the pocket is part of). What fact or facts might each reveal about their life? Once you’ve considered all that, try putting this character into a scene; it doesn’t have to be complex, maybe just their thoughts while walking home or waiting for a bus.

For 10 points submit all 3 stages of this exercise: the list of objects, what they reveal about the person who owns them and your attempt at a scene. All of this must come to 150 words or more to earn full points. We’ll be sharing all the exercises here after the deadline-if you’d rather yours wasn’t posted publicly, just let us know in your email.

Please send your exercises to Clarabella care of hol.bookclub @ gmail.com (without the spaces) with the subject-line ‘Week 3-Workshop-HOL ID’ by 19th November, 11.59 PM HOL-time. She can be very pernickety so please remember to include your HOL name, ID and house in the body of the email!
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Prof. Amy Lupin
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Re: Week 3-Writing Workshop

Postby Prof. Amy Lupin » Thu Nov 16, 2017 2:31 pm

Submissions received from:

Bull J. Johnson
Gail Allen
Maxim Trevelyan
Polaris Black
Prof. Gustavo Flores
Shiloh Adlar
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"I am only one, but I am one. I can't do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do."
- Edward Everett Hale

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Prof. Tarma Amelia Black
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Re: Week 3-Writing Workshop

Postby Prof. Tarma Amelia Black » Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:10 am

Gail Allen submitted:

Bandages, A game, Coins, Needle and thread, A comb

Bandages: This person is probably capable of at least some basic medical treatment, and also lives a life where injuries are relatively common. There might be war or maybe they work somewhere where accidents are very common.

A game: This person likely has friends around them fairly often; games require at least two to play them. Also this person has enough free time to find time to play a game, and they apparently like it as a pasttime.

Coins: This person can buy things, and have some way of getting an income, whether that is through work or other means. They are also feeling relatively safe that no one will take the money from them, or that if someone does, that it's an amount they can bare to lose. They might gamble.

Needle and thread: This indicates that the person can repair clothes on the go and are also likely to need to on a fairly regular basis and also that they care about it. They might work in a job that puts a lot of stress on clothing. It might also be part of a medical supply kit.

A comb: The person cares about their appearance and they have hair to brush.

The morning air was cold and the clouds overhead promised rain soon. The ground was still wet from the last shower.
It's strange how different the light is just before dawn. It's got an almost grey cast to it, that reminded her of the feathers of a dove.
She looked out across the field in front of the palisade. Everything was calm and she smothered a yawn, longing to slip back under the covers and get a few more hours of rest before the day truly began. But not yet. So far she was still on guard duty, and woe onto those who fell asleep during their duty.
They were the camp's only defence while the others slept. They had to be ready to raise the alarm, to wake everyone from their sleep, call them to battle.
But not today. Today the grey morning light filtered through the damp blades of grass without any enemy disturbance.
And soon, she could go back to sleep and give the guard duty over to the next shift.
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"You have the inborn natural right to remain silent. Don't think about it, don't talk about it, shuush ....... STILL." ~ Xaris

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Prof. Tarma Amelia Black
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Re: Week 3-Writing Workshop

Postby Prof. Tarma Amelia Black » Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:11 am

Maxim Trevelyan submitted:

Items:

Wrapper of Drooble's Best Blowing Gum with chewed gum
Used tissue paper
Change (three sickles and seven knuts)
Folded piece of paper
Wand

What Does It All Mean?:


Jasmine Bluegrasse is a very busy woman. She always seems to be somewhat occupied with work, even in her spare time. Make no mistake, Jasmine loves her job at The Daily Prophet, but she never seems to get a moment's peace, not even to eat in quiet. Which is the reason she always keeps a small snack or a piece of candy in her pocket. Due to all the work and stress that comes out of it, Jasmine has a bit delicate immune system. Colds and flu always get to her first or any other communicable disease, really, which is why since her Hogwarts years, Jasmine kept a few tissues with her everywhere she went. She is also very impulsive, especially when it comes to spending her money. Jasmine gets paid good money for her work (not to mention whatever will be left to her by her pureblood family), so she never viewed money as something really important, but something that is just there for her, whenever she needs it. Jasmine keeps some change in her pockets for any little impulsive buys, such as coffee, pastry or just a fancy thing that she sees in the windows as she passes by the shops. As mentioned before, being employed in The Daily Prophet, makes for one very busy woman, so Jasmine writes her work obligations and due dates on little pieces of paper, which she then multiplies and puts up in the areas she frequents, such as her office or her home. She never had any patience for a planner, nor is diligent enough to keep it updated. While contents of her coat pockets may change, there is one constant object always present. Her wand. Jasmine never parts from it, so she spells her pockets to be bigger on the inside, so she can have her hand wrapped around the wand while she strolls down the street on the way to or from work.

The Scene:

Jasmine dotted the last 'i' in the Letter to the Editors of The Daily Prophet for the next issue just as the clocked chimed six in the evening. Even without the assistance of the clock, she could tell it got darker just by the chill that had been spreading in the last hour. Jasmine felt a pressure build in her nose, so just in time, she got a new tissue from her pocket and blew. ''Time to go home,'' she murmured and sent her writing to one of the grunts of the editorial department.

Jasmine took her coat and put it on quickly, grabbing her Apple wand from the desk, stuffing it in her pocket. Giving a last look at her To-Do List, her left eye twitched as she saw that even though she cleared at least five points today, the list did not seem to get any smaller. Jasmine's stomach growled in protest, reminding her of her last meal five hours ago. Since she did not want to stop on her way, she took Drooble's Best Blowing Gum, one of her favorites, and popped it in her mouth. It will stave off the hunger until Jasmine could make herself a humble dinner in the safe confines of her home.

Jasmine snatched her purse from the chair nearer to the door of her office and exited the room, hurrying down the seemingly endless corridors of The Daily Prophet. Just as she was about to leave the building, a printing overseer halted her. Jasmine's stop was so sudden, she could hear the rattling of sickles and knuts. Stifling the growl that wanted to escape her lips, Jasmine gave her attention to the man, who moaned about the typo one of her people made on a twentieth page. Jasmine apologized, though she did not see the need for such a fuss, since the mistake was caught and fixed, however, she did pull a paper from the coat's pocket, which contained her To-Do List and added 'talk to editors about better proof-reading. Spell-checking quills?' to the next day's roster.

After politely extricating herself from the conversation, Jasmine practically ran to the Prophet's Apparition area and with a pop, was on her way to a warm home and a cup of hot chocolate.
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"You have the inborn natural right to remain silent. Don't think about it, don't talk about it, shuush ....... STILL." ~ Xaris

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Prof. Tarma Amelia Black
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Re: Week 3-Writing Workshop

Postby Prof. Tarma Amelia Black » Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:14 am

Polaris Black submitted:

From the moment Clarabella Tangleweed introduced her clever technique for devising a character, I couldn’t help but think of Rubeus Hagrid. When Harry went through the pockets of Hagrid’s magical overcoat, he found some items that revealed a lot about Hagrid’s life:

Bunches of keys are old-fashioned and are found in professions such as Housekeeper or Groundskeeper. A groundskeeper is “a person who maintains an athletic field, a park, or the grounds of a school or other institution”.
A very dirty, spotted handkerchief the size of a tablecloth implies that its owner is not of average stature but instead quite large. It also supports the notion that the person is a groundskeeper, whose hands are frequently dirty.
Peppermint Humbugs are a traditional hard candy available in the United Kingdom. The owner either lives in the United Kingdom or has recently visited.
A couple of dormice, endangered in the United Kingdom, aren’t likely to take up residence in a giant’s pocket. The fact that they chose to do so is testament to the love this person has for critters and the trust the critters have in return.
Strange-looking coins that are carried in one’s pocket have a magical connotation. The owner could be a collector, they could be amulets, talismans, and charms or they could represent an as yet unknown and mysterious form of currency.

Scene
When the ship docked in New York Harbor, Percival Graves was there to meet it. Without introduction, the Auror immediately recognized his charge; the man Albus Dumbledore frequently sent on special assignment was indeed a half-giant wizard. He quickly intercepted him and confunded the customs inspector; he didn’t even want to think about what was in the pockets of that overcoat. As soon as they cleared customs, he introduced himself and then the two of them headed toward MACUSA on foot. Nobody gave them a second glance; this was New York, after all.
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"You have the inborn natural right to remain silent. Don't think about it, don't talk about it, shuush ....... STILL." ~ Xaris

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Prof. Tarma Amelia Black
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Re: Week 3-Writing Workshop

Postby Prof. Tarma Amelia Black » Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:16 am

Prof. Gustavo Flores submitted:

Stage 1: List of objects:

A key, a chocolate frog card, a cinema ticket, and a folded draft of Ravenclaw’s House Crest.

Stage 2: What they reveal about the person who owns them.
That fact that this character has a key and a cinema ticket reveals the Muggle world, but since he also has chocolate frog card and a draft of Ravenclaw’s House Crest, that reveals the magical world. Putting all of this together, I can say that this character is a Muggle Born Wizard. During the summer period he lives in the muggle world with his muggle family (that is why he has a key to his house). He’s been living in the Muggle world since his childhood and that is why he knows and enjoys muggle activities like going to the cinema. The folded draft reveals that he attends Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and that he was sorted in Ravenclaw. He is drawing his house crest, which also reveals his past as a muggle kid. If he has a chocolate frog card, that means that he likes candy and collecting stuff.

Stage 3: Attempt at a scene
He was walking down the busy muggle street. He had just watched a movie at the local cinema and he was happy. Now he was heading back home, walking at his own pace, strolling around the shops.

He loved attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, but he also really enjoyed being back in the muggle world with his family. Every now and then it was nice to escape the magical world and return to his roots. That was the reason why he loved summer vacations so much!

He continued walking until he reached an art shop. He entered and bought some materials he needed to work on his summer project. When he was a kid, he attended art lessons and one of his biggest passions was to draw. He was seriously considering to become a professional artist but then his Hogwarts letter arrived, changing his plans. He didn’t regret it though. The magical world was everything he had ever imagined, and now, in two weeks he was about to start his seventh and last year of his magical education.

He went out of the store and continued walking, not before checking that he still had the keys to his house. He found the keys and also a chocolate frog card. He remembered all the chocolate frog supplies that were waiting for him back home and started walking faster, smiling by just imagining the afternoon ahead of him: candy and his Ravenclaw art. How lucky he felt at that very moment…he was a wizard, but also a muggle. He could live the best of both worlds. He couldn’t ask for more!
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"You have the inborn natural right to remain silent. Don't think about it, don't talk about it, shuush ....... STILL." ~ Xaris

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Prof. Tarma Amelia Black
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Re: Week 3-Writing Workshop

Postby Prof. Tarma Amelia Black » Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:17 am

Shiloh Adlar submitted:

My list of five random items for my character includes Numerology and Grammatica, a replica racing broom, a golden snitch, a crystal phial, and an apple. The Numerology and Grammatica book reveals that this person is either in Arithmancy or has a liking for the subject or perhaps both. The replica racing broom indicates that this person probably loves quidditch or flying in general. They may have a dream of doing something with flying professionally one day. The golden snitch probably indicates that this person might be a seeker. The crystal phial may indicate that they like to collect ingredients for potions randomly or that they carry one on them just in case. The apple probably means that the person likes to make sure they have a healthy snack available because they might get hungry later.

Character Scene:

Abbigal made her way out of the school and to the quidditch pitch where she planned to watch the Ravenclaw team practice. She was a third year, and she dreamed of being a seeker like her brother one day. In fact, her brother had gifted her last Christmas with a replica model racing broom and a golden snitch to help encourage her with her dreams.

She loved watching her brother practice and the rest of the team, but right now, she had only left potions, and the crystal phial she carried in her pocket still had a bit of dried billywig sting in it from class. She could feel some slime leaking from it and onto her robes. She quickly took it out, sealed it more carefully before replacing it and taking out her Numerology and Grammatica book to study for Arithmancy along with an apple she had kept from lunch for an afternoon snack.

Taking a bite of the apple, she saw her brother and the rest of the team walking out onto the pitch. She admired their uniforms and smiled when they lifted off into the air. They flew so gracefully, and her daydreams started once more, no use trying for any homework now, as she flew alongside her brother seeking the elusive golden snitch.
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"You have the inborn natural right to remain silent. Don't think about it, don't talk about it, shuush ....... STILL." ~ Xaris


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