Tuesday, May 02, 2006

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.


1 comment:

Chris said...

Going through this as I read it:
good opening
I'd prefer stronger punctuation after "her hand" - a dash, maybe, or a semi-colon.
Take out comma after "such as" in para 2 and put one in after "freckles"
the sentence beginning "although" has no main verb - why not begin it with "However"

Your sentence structure becomes a bit weak as you get into the story. Watch out for run-on sentences (comma splice in a few places)
Don't suddenly shift point of view when the mother reacts - and DON'T use an exclamation mark together with a question mark - this isn't a comic.

All this makes it sound as if this is no good. Quite the reverse - it's a good story which fits the question well. Just keep control of your writing - don't let yourself become so involved in the situation that you forget to be careful with every word and every punctuation mark.

I hope you have the chance to do something like this in the exam. Break a leg! (do well, in other words - and enjoy yourself despite the need for care and awareness)

Sorry not to see this earlier - I've been at a meeting in Oban all day.