Write a line challenge

SECONDARY schools are being urged to sign up for a new ScottishPower initiative aimed at encouraging reading, writing and creativity.

In association with the Edinburgh International Book Festival, the energy company has launched Story Generator. Pupils will be given the opening line from celebrated Scottish children’s author Julie Bertagna as the starting point for their story and the youngsters can then use their imagination to take the tale forward.

She has provided the opening line for the Story Generator initiative from her novel Exodus - “Out on the world’s ocean, night is a black war-horse. The white ship bucks upon it like a ghost rider with no reins.”

Pupils are asked to each add just one individual line to the story before the next pupil picks up the thread of the tale with their own sentence. The whole school or class can contribute to generate their own story.  There are no rules regarding length or content.

The winning school will receive a donation of books and there will also be a prize for the individual pupil who provides the best line.

ScottishPower has launched Story Generator in association with the Edinburgh International Book Festival. Julie Bertagna will be appearing at the Book Festival’s RBS Imagination Lab on Sunday, August 14. Julie writes stories for children and young adults, including the Exodus trilogy.

Ann Loughrey, head of CSR at ScottishPower, said: “The line provided by Julie Bertagna is a fantastic introduction to the Story Generator initiative and I am looking forward to seeing the way in which different schools and pupils can develop a story from the same opening line.

“Story Generator provides a great opportunity to encourage reading, writing and creativity within secondary schools and we are delighted to be working with Julie Bertagna and the Edinburgh International Book Festival.”

Sadie McKinlay, sponsorship and development manager at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, said: “The Edinburgh International Book Festival is all about encouraging writers and we are delighted to support ScottishPower in their new initiative”.

The launch of Story Generator follows the highly successful ScottishPower Story Swap Shop for primary school children. Now in its third year, more than 60 schools across Scotland have participated, raising much-needed funds for charity whilst also encouraging youngsters to read.

If you would like to register your school to take part in ScottishPower’s Story Generator initiative please contact Kirstin Aitken at The BIG Partnership on 0141 333 9585 or kirstin.aitken@bigpartnership.co.uk. Schools should register their interest before September 2.