Monday, 24 March 2014

Final copy

Here is my final draft I hope you enjoy it!

SC: To use short sentences to create suspense.


For weeks before camp everyone talked about abseiling. At first I thought it was a type of sailing a little boat! Yay! I like water, and boats. I might be an expert. Then I noticed on our camp packing list...a bike helmet...for abseiling...hang on! My group decided to research abseiling and guess means walking backwards down a HUGE crumbling rock face with just a tiny thin rope between you and certain death falling all the way to the ground! Actually our research assured us it was safe, there would be an instructor and the ropes they use could hold the weight of a fully grown african elephant. Hmm, so it was all perfectly safe. I was not convinced.

The day of camp finally arrived. My tummy churned with butterflies. Some kids were worried about being away from home, not me! All I could think about was dropping ourselves over some gigantic rock face somewhere!

As the bus rolled through the gates to Highland Home my eyes widened. A huge blanket of grass emerged to our left. On the right a long gravel road twisted down a hill and the top of a huge wooden tower loomed high in the air. My tummy flip flopped, I wonder what that was for? 

Soon we were off the bus and strolling around the grounds on our tour. 
We settled into camp and there were lots of fun activities. Always at the back of my mind though was that tiny string thing hanging off that huge rock face! 

Night came and the last thing I saw before I ducked into my cabin was that huge wall glooming over Highland home watching us like a tiger silently stalking his prey.

Morning came. I checked the timetable.

8. Abseiling 

I could not believe it!? How could we do this if there was no abseiling cliff face? Oh well. First up for my group was rock climbing. Ants the instructor went though all the stuff we needed to know. All of a sudden it dawned on me that the wall was a huge, and I mean HUGE cube so that means... AHHH THE ABSEILING IS ON THE OTHER SIDE!!!!!!!

At breakfast the next morning everyone talked about how they are scared of heights. They asked me if I was. I don’t know? Maybe I should be scared of heights.? I tried to remember our next activity um.... was it slip and slide? No. Rock climbing? No. Photo diary. UH NO. ABSEILING! It all went dark...

I found myself at the foot of the ‘tower of death’ it loomed in the air taller than the Eiffel Tower. We put on harnesses (that kind of gave me a wedgie)! Soon I was called up the ladders. Had anyone checked these things?! They were rusty and old. Rickety like a car with loose screws. They wobbled and wobbled but I made it up. When I reached the top Ants clipped me up. Everything became still and silent. All happiness and light drained away. I tore my gaze from my shoes and slowly and reached for the bar grasped it and looked up. Here we go.

My heart was pounding, bang bang bang it went. Could everyone hear it.?The sound of it wound me up even more. I started walking down the wall, suddenly my footing slipped. Strike one. I clutched the rope in terror. I looked down at the scene below, the rest of my group were miniature mice. Strike two. As I neared half way a strange sensation began flowing over me. It was confidence! I felt way better, I even started doing bounces! I could not believe it, it was actually fun! When I got to the bottom I felt incredibly relieved.  What a great experience. I felt on top of the world!


  1. What a fantastic effort with this story Bella! Your first draft started as recount about the whole camp experience. Then you looked at the criteria again and narrowed it down to one subject - abseiling. You have followed the steps for editing and made a compelling and funny story. Well done! Mum.

    1. Thanks Mum! I felt like I did well too.

  2. Hey Bells! What a great story! I went on Emelia's camp last year and got to have a go at abseiling as well, you are soooo right it is pretty scary when you start but pretty awesome when you look back up from the bottom. Well done on beating your fear and it sounds like you had a brilliant camp!

    1. Thank you so much. And yes it was an awesome camp! I really enjoyed making this piece of writing as it is my favourite subject!

  3. What a great little writer you are Bella! Wish some of my kids at school could write as well as you do. All that interesting language and so much emotion! I could feel your fear!
    I bet you went back up for a second 'go'. So proud of you love. Janna x

    1. Thanks Jannna. You have really brightened my day! Love Bella!

  4. I agree Bella, this is a wonderful piece of writing peppered with features to give the reader clarity and draw them into your experiences. I loved the "My tummy churned with butterflies" and the part where your tummy flip flopped. I could really relate to this. Some super personal voice coming through also. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.