Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Thank you!


Well that's the dreaded English exam over now and both LP and myself feel that it went pretty well - although we're trying really hard not to jinx it! We just wanted to say thank you to everyone who spent time reading our entries and leaving comments. Also most importantly we want to thank you Chris for all your help and guidance. Hopefully when our certificates arrive in August we will have grades that we can really be proud of!


Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Question - Write about an incident in your life when you felt that there was no escape.
Remember to include your thoughts and feelings.

The moment I heard that there had been a severe boat crash in Tarbert, involving three couples and killing three vital members of our close community, the sheer scale of the accident didn’t hit me. It wasn’t until the following day when I saw details of the event in the tabloids that I finally realised that Issie, once a dear family friend, was really gone forever …

It was a typical day in the school holidays and I was spending the day with my friends shopping in Greenock – we all needed a busy day to take our minds off things. We all tried hard not to mention the previous day’s events: but even remotely related topics brought vivid images of Issie back.

Once we arrived at the shopping centre we headed for a newsagents; we all felt rather hungry. I was wandering carefree around the shop when all of a sudden something caught my eye from the opposite wall.

It was her.

Shaking, I made my way towards the newspaper and grasped it firmly with both of my hands. Issie’s radiant smile was spread across the front page. I sorrowfully wandered over to the till and paid for the paper, before speedily sprinting towards the door.

I collapsed on a bench outside before struggling to open to paper. Trembling, I tore through the pages before reaching the centrefold. The sharp headline hit me; the vivid images of the demolished boat scarred my eyes. It was true. My eyes felt heavy as they scanned the story. Issie was really dead. Tears started to develop in my eyes as slowly they brimmed over my eyelids. My chest was closing in. I felt faint. How could this happen? Why? Issues was not only my music teacher but she had once been a close friend. We had gone on holiday together; I distinctly remember her fear of the water. Why had she been on a speedboat so late? How could she be gone?

I began gasping for air. I couldn’t breathe; I couldn’t escape. I had to leave: I had to just get away and leave this horrific nightmare behind. But I couldn’t. It wasn’t just a bad dream – it was completely real. There was nothing that I, or anyone else, could do. The lump in my throat and hammering pain in my chest felt real though. And the warm salty tears which were streaming down my cheeks mixing with the cold sweat on my face were horribly realistic. Still shaking, my hands crumpled the paper, as I broke down into tears. I had to get away. I glanced up and desperately looked for an exit. I wanted to run away to a simpler time when Issie would still be there – but I couldn’t.

Suddenly, through my tears, I caught sight of my friends’ concerned faces. I opened my mouth struggling to find the words but they escaped me. I shook my head and buried my head into my sweaty hands. There truly was no escape. Issie was gone.

“Sarah?” someone asked.

I gazed up at the blurry faces in front of me and croaked through my tears “Issie …”

They all stared blankly at me, unaware of what would be the right thing to say. Unaware of how I felt. Unaware that I just wanted to wake up from this traumatic nightmare.

I realise that this is a couple of sentences too short but there were a lot of distractions in the house that would obviously not happen in an exam. Could you possibly tell me what grade I would achieve for this if it was just a bit longer?


past paper

I have done a past paper question it is 999 words, I am quite a fast writer, although it did take me almost all of the time limit. I will need to manage my time a bit beter.

Question: Write in any way you wish using the following title; Curiosity Killed

”Why?!” she yelled at her mother, marching back and forth as she became increasingly frustrated. “Why won’t you give me a proper answer?” Her mother did not answer her but instead continued scrubbing at the dirty dishes. Alison knew her mother like the back of her hand, she could tell what each and every one of her facial expressions meant. Even if mother had the biggest smile on her face, Alison could look at her and know if there was something not quite right. This time she knew that her mother was hiding something from her, although it was unclear why.
For years Alison had established that she was different from her family. She knew that although she shared certain characteristics with her mother, very few were also shared with her siblings. The only characteristics Alison had in common with her younger brother and sister were small things such as, eye colour and freckles but these were also shared with her mother and her father. Although she had always wondered why there were bigger features in her face and body that the others in her family did not have. Why did she have blonde hair whilst her family all had a dark auburn colour? Why was she almost the same height as her cousins and aunts, even though she was much younger? Why was her shape of face of completely different to everyone else?
With all of these thoughts and her emotions bubbling up inside her waiting to burst, Alison stomped her feet off the floor and let out an exasperated scream as she stormed out of the kitchen marching towards her bedroom. She quickly got to her room, slammed the door shut and paced her bedroom floor as her impatience grew with every second. Alison then began thinking of new ways to expand her knowledge of her family history, knowing that she was not going to get any information from her mother she decided that she would pursue her search with a different approach. What could she possibly do, she wasn’t even sure who or what to look for!
Alison then realised that her mother and her father kept heaps of old boxes, full of impractical keepsakes and old photographs, in the attic. Alison pulled on her slippers and a warm jumper and climbed up the ladders into the cold, dusty, old room. As her breath appeared in front of her, she looked at the piles of boxes and wondered what answers she would come across. She dug deep behind the boxes at the front marked “toys“, “books” and “junk” as she new that they had just been placed there quite recently after a large clear out of their bedrooms. After a few minutes of searching and rumbling around with her torch, she discovered a box marked, “rubbish” in her mother’s handwriting. Brushing away the cobwebs, Alison wondered why her mother would keep “rubbish” hidden away. Alison carefully carried the box to under the skylight window where she would be able to view the contents better, pulled over an old beanbag and sat down with the box on her lap. If she opened it, would this be an invasion of her mother’s privacy or would this be the answer she was looking for? It didn’t take her long to decide, she had to know. She carefully opened the box and looked inside. She rummaged around and found several letters and a photograph of a strange man. The man was wearing a uniform, as though he was in the navy. Alison felt intrigued as she began to notice he had similar features to her, the kind her family did not. Her stomach lurched. Shiny blonde hair, he stood very straight which made Alison think that he might be tall and they both had the same rounded jaw line. She placed the photo to one side, heart racing, she carefully opened one of the letters with her trembling fingers. All of the letters had the same handwriting and were all addressed to her mother. The postage stamps were marked the Falkland Islands. She read through one of the letters and her eyes started streaming with tears as she read, “I am so sorry I wasn’t there to see the birth of our baby girl. I am hoping that the war will end soon and you and Alison and I can be together.” Her eyes felt heavy and were heating up. Trying to hold back the tears she could not bear to read on. With this evidence and the fact she was older than her siblings by approximately 6 years she knew that this must be her answer.
On wobbly legs she walked into the living room where her mother was sitting, she thrust the photograph and the letter into her mother’s hand unable to talk through her uncontrollable flow of tears. Her mother looked at her daughter in disbelief, her eyes filling up. “Where did you find this?!” she yelled not knowing whether to be angry or upset. Alison sobbed, “Will you give me some answers now? He is my real father isn’t he?” and collapsed in a heap beside her mother. Her mother nodded. “Why didn’t you just tell me, why did you wait so long that I had find out myself?” Alison slurred.
“I am so sorry, I thought it would have been better this way for the both of us. I didn‘t want it affecting your relationship with your dad.” her mother explained as her tears flowed more rapidly.
“Will you tell me about him?” Alison asked as her head began to pound. She could not be angry as she could tell by his letter that he loved her mother very much.
“Of course,” she replied, took a deep breath and wiped away her tears. Alison knew that whatever her mother was about to say would finally answer her questions but wondered how it would change her life and if she would ever regret asking.