Bookings for 2024-2025 Opening Soon

11 Plus (11+) Creative Writing Topics

Last updated: October 6, 2023

Bookcase with books

6 key 11 plus (11+) creative writing topics

The following are common topics 11+ applicants may be presented within their creative writing exam, how to tackle them, and examples of books about these topics to prepare with.



Stories about adventures or activities

Hiker sitting on top of a mountain

You may be asked to write a story about an adventure or activity with a prompt similar to the following:

Write about…

  • winning a race or award
  • a hobby you enjoy
  • going on an adventure
 

Books about an adventure or activity:

Some books that you may find helpful as inspiration for writing a story on this topic are:

  1. Treasure Island, Robert Stevenson, Examberry Children’s Classic Reading Workbook edition
  2. Breakfast Club Adventures, Marcus Rashford
  3. Running on the Roof of the World, Jess Butterworth
  4. Famous Five Adventure Series, Enid Blyton
  5. Tanglewreck, Jeanette Winterson
  6. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
  7. The Odyssey, Homer, Usborne Young Reading edition
  8. The Wonder team and the Forgotten Footballers, Leah Williamson
  9. Harry Potter series, J.K.Rowling
  10. The BFG, Roald Dahl
 

Tip:

  • Focus on the feeling of discovery – think about what new things your character is learning or experiencing through the adventure or activity.

Stories about animals

Whale and calf under the sea

You may be asked to write a story about an animal/animals with a prompt similar to the following:

Write about…

  • your favourite animal
  • your pet
  • a zoo/sea/jungle animal/creature
 

Books about animals:

Some books that you may find helpful as inspiration for writing a story on this topic are:

  1. The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame, Examberry Children’s Classic Reading Workbook Edition
  2. The Tale of Despereaux, Kate DiCamillo
  3. Animal Farm, George Orwell
  4. Mrs Frisby and the Rats of Nimh, Robert C.O.Brien
  5. The Butterfly Lion, Michael Morpurgo
  6. Charlotte’s Web, E.B.White
  7. Beautiful Joe’s Paradise, Margaret Marshall Saunders
  8. The Lost Whale, Hannah Gold
  9. The Last Firefox, Lee Newberry
  10. Black Beauty, Anna Sewell
 

Tip: 

  • Use anthropomorphisation – give the animals human traits to make them more empathetic (more relatable) to the reader.

Stories about emotions

Glowing red heart in a sea of grey hearts

You may be asked to write a story about an emotion with a prompt similar to the following:

 

Write about…

  • a time when you felt afraid/happy/jealous/sad/angry
  • how you overcame a fear/challenge
  • joy/disgust/hope
 

Books about emotions:

Some books that you may find helpful as inspiration for writing a story on this topic are:

 

  1. A Boy Called Hope, Lara Williamson
  2. A Pocketful of Stars, Aisha Bushby
  3. Wonder, R.J.Palacio
  4. Ella on the Outside, Cath Howe
  5. The Goldfish Boy, Lisa Thompson
  6. The Boy Who Lied, Kim Slater
  7. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Mark Haddon
  8. Can You See Me?, Libby Scott
  9. The Book Thief, Marcus Zusak
  10. See You in the Cosmos, Jack Cheng
 

Tip:

  • Relate the emotions to the five senses – e.g. what colour does hope look like, what does sadness smell like?

Stories about an environment

Green forest with light shards coming through

You may be asked to write a story about an environment with a prompt similar to the following:

Write about…

  • the sea, the forest, a garden
  • a house, a castle
  • a bridge, a door, a greenhouse
 

Books about an environment:

Some books that you may find helpful as inspiration for writing a story on this topic are:

  1. The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
  2. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, C.S.Lewis
  3. Nim’s Island, Wendy Orr
  4. Isadora Moon Under the Sea, Harriet Muncaster
  5. The Magical Faraway Tree, Enid Blyton
  6. Wildsmith: Into the Dark Forest, Liz Flanagan
  7. Our Castle by the Sea, Lucy Strange
  8. Tom’s Midnight Garden, Philippa Pearce
  9. Coraline, Neil Gaiman
  10. Howl’s Moving Castle, Dianna Wynne Jones
 

Tip:

  • Use personification to give the environment a sense of power – e.g. “It was a heavy burden for the sea, carrying all those ships on her blue surface, but she did it proudly, for it was her responsibility to care for them.”

Stories about people

Two girls dressed up as witches

You may be asked to write a story about a person or a group of people with a prompt similar to the following:

Write about…

  • a role model
  • a family member/friend
  • an original character (e.g. wizard, doctor, teacher)

 

Books about people:

Some books that you may find helpful as inspiration for writing a story on this topic are:

    1. A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens, Examberry Children’s Classic Reading Workbook edition
    2. Anne of Green Gables, Lucy Maud Montgomery
    3. Heidi, Johanna Spyri
    4. Sherlock Holmes series, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
    5. Percy Jackson series, Rick Riordan
    6. Agent Zaiba Investigates, Annabelle Sami
    7. Lightning Girl, Alesha Dixon
    8. Tales from beyond the rainbow, Peter Jordi Wood
    9. Little People, Big Dreams series, Maria Isabel Sánchez Vegara
    10. Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
 

Tip:

  • Use adjectives – i.e. descriptive words, to describe characters’ appearance and emotions.

Stories about travel

Hot air balloon in the sky with a rock formation and trees in the background

You may be asked to write a story about travelling somewhere with a prompt similar to the following:

Write about…

  • travelling to another country
  • travelling to another world
  • travelling to the countryside, seaside or city
 

Books about travel:

Some books that you may find helpful as inspiration for writing a story on this topic are:

 

  1. The Girl of Ink and Stars, Kiran Millwood Hargrave
  2. The Boy Who Biked the World series, Alastair Humphreys
  3. Around the world in Eighty Days, Jane Bingham
  4. Gulliver’s Travels, Jonathan Swift
  5. The London Eye Mystery, Siobhan Dowd
  6. Journey to the Centre of the Earth, Jules Verne, Usborne Young Reading edition
  7. The Wizard of Oz, L.Frank Baum
  8. No Ballet Shoes in Syria, Catherine Bruton
  9. The Children of Castle Rock, Natasha Farrant
  10. The Phantom Tollbooth, Norton Jester
 

Tip:

  • Use verbs and adverbs – use verbs to add a sense of movement in the story and adverbs to describe the experience of travelling.

11+ Creative Writing Course

Our 11+ Creative Writing Course is led by 11+ experts who will prepare your child for their creative writing exam(s). The course starts this October 2023. Book now to secure your child’s place!

Share this article

More articles

Contents

Learn more about our expert 11+ Creative Writing Course

Increase your child’s chances of entrance success!

0
    Your Basket
    Your basket is emptyReturn to Shop

      Term 1

      w/c 2nd October: Session 1 

      w/c 9th October: Session 2

      w/c 16th October: NO SESSION

      w/c 23rd October: HALF TERM

      w/c 30th October: Session 3

      w/c 6th November: Session 4

      w/c 13th November: Session 5

      w/c 20th November: Session 6

      w/c 27th November: Session 7

      w/c 4th December: Session 8

      w/c 11th December: NO SESSION

      w/c 18th December: XMAS BREAK

      w/c 25th December: XMAS BREAK

      w/c 1st Jan: NO SESSION (Bank Holiday on 1st Jan)

      Term 2

      w/c 8th Jan: Session 9

      w/c 15th Jan Session 10

      w/c 22nd Jan: Session 11

      w/c 29th Jan: Session 12

      w/c 5th Feb: NO SESSION

      w/c 12th Feb: HALF TERM

      w/c 19th Feb: Session 13

      w/c 26th Feb: Session 14

      w/c 4th March: Session 15

      w/c 11th March: Session 16

      w/c 18th March: NO SESSION

      w/c 25th March: EASTER BREAK

      w/c 1st April: EASTER BREAK

      w/c 8th April: EASTER BREAK

      Term 3

      w/c 15th April: Session 17

      w/c 22nd April: Session 18

      w/c 29th April: Session 19

      w/c 6th May: NO SESSION (6TH MAY BANK HOLIDAY)

      w/c 13th May: Session 20

      w/c 20th May: NO SESSION

      w/c 27TH May: HALF TERM

      w/c 3rd June: Session 21

      w/c 10th June: Session 22

      w/c 17th June : Session 23

      w/c 24th June: Session 24

      w/c 1st July: -course finished-

      w/c 8th July: -course finished-

      w/c 15th July : -course finished-