In case you're finding it hard knowing how to start writing a story, here's Jeremy Strong to give you a few tips on what makes a story work.

Every writer has their own way of writing. How you actually write your story is up to you - that’s what makes it YOUR story. But below, I have tried to put together a few general tips that you may find helpful. Good luck!

1. The beginning

Get your story off to a good start. Begin with some action, or an interesting bit of dialogue. Here are two examples.

There was a dreadful noise from above as the rhinoceros slid backwards off the roof and landed in the garden pond.

This immediately makes you want to know what on earth is going on and to do that you have to carry on reading.

Result! Here’s some dialogue:

'Rachel, why are you wearing a bucket on your head?' Harry asked.

You want to know the answer, so you have to read more. Result again.

2. Surprise! Surprise!

Something unexpected should happen. It might just be something different. For example - a girl gets a pet as a present. That’s pretty ordinary, but then it turns out that the pet is a baby elephant, an ostrich, maybe a gorilla. There’s no end to the kind of surprise you can come up with. You might lead the reader to expect one thing, and then things turn out to be quite different. For example, a villain turns out to be the hero - or vice versa.