Course Title: Write extended stories

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2013

Course Code: COMM5911C

Course Title: Write extended stories

School: 345T Media and Communication

Campus: City Campus

Program: C6125 - Advanced Diploma of Professional Screenwriting

Course Contact : Program Administration

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4815

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Teacher: John Reeves
Phone: 9925 4895

Nominal Hours: 40

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

Write Extended Stories is taught within the course Storytelling, which is made up of two competencies Write Simple Stories and Write Extended Stories. Strong storytelling is an essential component of screenwriting and the competency Write Extended Stories delivers the skills, craft and knowledge required to write longer stories.
This competency Write Extended Stories (CUFWRT402A) is delivered and assessed with Write Simple Stories (CUFWRT302A).

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUFWRT402A Write extended stories


1. Analyse extended story writing requirements

Performance Criteria:

1. Identify the components of a storytelling creative concept, brief or project, including target audience, format, timeline and proposed outcomes
2. Consider factors such as style, tone and length in relation to purpose of the writing task
3. Decide on the most appropriate structuring technique for extended story writing tasks
4. Discuss with relevant personnel possible visual and aural storytelling structures if appropriate to storytelling tasks


2. Prepare to write extended stories

Performance Criteria:

5. Research extended and more complex stories from a range of creative works that may inspire story ideas to meet project requirements
6. Use information sources to research subject areas
7. Experiment with a range of narrative structures and writing styles and techniques
8. Develop extended ideas for characters, plots and settings
9. Develop complex scenarios, contexts and situations as required
10. Select the story structure, style, techniques and content that best meet the requirements of projects
11. Seek feedback from relevant personnel on proposed stories and refine approach as required


3. Draft extended stories

Performance Criteria:

12. Draft extended stories using appropriate structuring, style and language
13. Use relevant formatting and presentation techniques
14. Proofread draft stories for appropriate grammar, punctuation and spelling
15. Submit draft manuscripts to relevant personnel for feedback and amend as required


4. Write final drafts

Performance Criteria:

16. Evaluate extended stories in line with relevant criteria
17. Discuss and confirm with relevant personnel additional requirements or modifications to the story
18. Complete necessary amendments as required within agreed timelines
19. Evaluate story writing process, assessing one's own performance and noting areas for future improvement

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will be able to use both linear and non-linear structures to write simple and extended stories, You will build your understanding and overview of the history and importance of storytelling.

Details of Learning Activities

You will learn through:
1. In-class activities:
industry speakers
teacher directed group activities/projects
peer teaching and class presentations
group discussion
class exercises to review discussions/lectures
reading of excerpts of writings and set texts to provide examples of writing elements
workshopping of students’ own projects
analysis/critique of writings of students’ choice

2. Out-of-class activities:
independent project based work
writing and reading assignments
online and other research
independent study

Teaching Schedule

Please note: While your teacher will cover all the material in this schedule, the weekly order is subject to change depending on class needs and availability of speakers and resources.

Week Class Content Assessment Due Competency and Elements
1  Introduction to Storytelling. Explanation of course content and overview of assessment    CUFWRT302A - 1
2  Sourcing: Looking for stories that matter
Story Structure: Beginning, Middle and End
Story workshop: One Afternoon
   CUFWRT302A - 2
CUFWRT402A - 1
3  Sourcing: Fairy Tales
Reading: Little Red Riding Hood, The Sleeping Beauty
Reports: Charles Perrault, Fairy Tales
   CUFWRT302A – 2,3
CUFWRT402A - 1
4  Sourcing: Fairy Tales (cont’d)
Reading: Hansel and Gretel, Cinderella
Reports: The Grimm Brothers
Story workshops
   CUFWRT302A – 2, 3
CUFWRT402A - 1
5  Sourcing: Classical drama
Reading/Reports: Aristotle, Aristophanes, E M Forster, Linda Aronson
Story Structure: The Inciting Incident
Story workshops
   CUFWRT302A – 3, 4
CUFWRT402A - 1
6  Sourcing: The Power of Myth
Reading: Joseph Campbell, Christopher Vogler
Story Structure: Conflict
Story workshops
 Assessment #1: Redrafting your story  CUFWRT302A - 2
CUFWRT402A - 1
7  Storytellers in the Screen Industry: The Early Days
Viewing: Frances Marion
Reading/Reports: F. Scott Fitzgerald, Daniel Fuchs
 Assessment #2 due: A story drawing on folk or fairytale elements  CUFWRT302A – 2
CUFWRT402A - 2
8  Sourcing: A Sense of Place
Viewing: North By Northwest
Reading/Reports: Lisa Dethridge, Wim Wenders
Story workshops
   CUFWRT302A - 3
9  Sourcing: The Hero Myth
Extended Story Structure: Characterization, Character Development, Motivation
Reading/Reports: Alfred Hitchcock, Patricia Highsmith, David Mamet
Story workshops
   CUFWRT302A – 3, 4
CUFWRT402A - 2
10  Sourcing: Road Tales
Storytellers in the Screen Industry: David Goodis
Reading/Reports: Syd Field, Helen Garner
Story workshops
   CUFWRT302A - 3
11  Sourcing: True Tales
Extended Story Structure: Set-up, Payoff, Antagonists
Stories for short film
Reading/Reports: Henry Lawson, Peter Carey, Tim Winton
  Assessment #4 due: “The Extraordinary Within the Ordinary”


 CUFWRT302A - 3
12  Sourcing: Looking for Subtext
Extended Story Structure: Mystery, Suspense, Irony
Viewing: Roger Corman
Reading/Reports: Edgar Allan Poe, Robert McKee
Story workshops
   CUFWRT302A - 3
13  Sourcing: Imagery
Extended Story Structure: The Middle, Upping the Stakes
Stories for feature film
Reading/Reports: Mary Fortune, Barbara Baynton, Mary Gaunt, Linda Seger
Story workshops
   CUFWRT302A - 3
CUFWRT402A - 4
14  Sourcing: The Story Within
Extended Story Structure: Emotion - Beyond Story
Reading/Reports: Tom Hanlin, Colm Toíbín, Adrian Martin
 Assessment #5 due: “A Suspenseful Tale”  CUFWRT302A - 3
CUFWRT402A - 4
15  Sourcing: Family Ties/Valued Objects
Extended Story Structure: dramatic action
Reading/Reports: Writing For Children
   CUFWRT302A - 3
CUFWRT402A - 4
16  Sourcing: True Crime
Extended Story Structure: Crisis, Conflict, Climax
Reading: Australian Police Journal, Henning Mankell
   CUFWRT302A - 3
CUFWRT402A - 4

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

The Storytelling Course Reader 2013 will be available early in the semester.


Extracts, readings and additional references are provided throughout the course. In addition to hard copy handouts, some readings are made available on Blackboard, and others can be accessed via the web. Recommended books will be discussed in class. You are advised to visit Blackboard for ongoing updated information

Other Resources

Students will require access to a word processing program and the facility to print hard copies of stories for workshopping. These facilities are available in the Carlton Library.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment for this course is ongoing throughout the semester. Your knowledge and understanding of course content is assessed through participation in class exercises, oral presentations and through the application of learned skills and insights to your writing tasks.

Assessment Tasks

This unit Write Extended Stories is delivered and assessed in conjunction with Write Simple Stories .You will be assessed on your knowledge and ability to write both simple and extended stories that engage the target audience and meet the requirements or purpose of a storytelling concept, brief or project. 

Assessment tasks in this course are either formative or summative. Formative tasks provide the basis for ongoing feedback and can be considered essential building blocks for the more substantial summative assessment tasks. Summative assessment tasks in this unit are graded..

  • Formative Assessment
  • Assessment #1: Redrafting your story: exploring the power of collaborative writing and feedback Due: Week beginning March 18
  • Assessment #2: Submit for feedback, a redrafted story drawing on folk and/or fairytale elements (1500 words) Due: Week beginning March 25
  • Assessment #3 Workshop a draft of a story  based on the theme “The Extraordinary within the Ordinary”   Due: In class on date negotiated with teacher
  • Assessment #4: Submit for feedback, a  redrafted story  based on the theme “The Extraordinary within the Ordinary” (2000 words) Due: Week beginning April 22
  • Assessment #5 Workshop a draft of a “A Suspenseful Tale”   Due: In class on date negotiated with teacher

Summative Assessment

  • Assessment #6 Submit a final draft of “A Suspenseful Tale” in professional format (2,500) demonstrating your  expertise and skills as a storyteller  Due: Week beginning May 20                      

 Grades used in this unit are as follows:

•HD Competent with High Distinction
•CDI Competent with Distinction
•CC Competent with Credit
•CAG Competency Achieved - Graded
•NYC Not Yet Competent
•DNS Did Not Submit for Assessment

For further information on the assessment and grading criteria, please refer to the course blackboard site

Assessment Matrix

Assessment matrix
The assessment matrix demonstrates alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency. These are available through the course contact in Program administration.

Other Information

The major learning experience involves studio based exercises, demonstration and production. It is strongly advised that students attend all sessions in order to engage in the required learning activities, ensuring the maximum opportunity to gain the competency.

Cover Sheet for Submissions
All students must complete a submission cover sheet for each piece of submitted work.

Plagiarism - RMIT has a strict policy on plagiarism. For more information on this policy go to Academic Integrity

All students have access to the myRMIT copyright shell. The myRMIT copyright shell contains information on copyright, plus also examples on how to use copyright works as part of your projects and assignments.

Special consideration Policy (Late Submission)
All assessment tasks are required to be completed to a satisfactory level. If you are unable to complete any piece of assessment by the due date, you will need to apply for an extension. Please refer to the following URL for extensions and special consideration:

Student Progress Committee
This committee promotes the early identification of students who are not achieving acceptable academic performance. The committee provides identified students with assistance and seeks to ensure such students are aware of the range of support services available to them at the University. Student Progress Committee (SPC)

Student Feedback
Students are offered opportunities to provide feedback through a variety of mechanisms including online surveys conducted at the end of each course or semester, student complaints and Student Staff Consultative Committees

Course Overview: Access Course Overview