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Writing Through the Wardrobe



Author and professor Jonathan Rogers of Grammar for Writers teaches high school students how to improve their own creative writing by examining the literary elements of Narnia.


Writing through the Wardrobe is a video-based self-study, made with the assumption that attentive readers can improve their own creative writing. Join Jonathan Rogers on a journey into the literary elements of Narnia. Admire the description, dialogue, concision and pacing of the classic The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

Dr. Rogers has written The Wilderking Trilogy, The World According to Narnia, and other books.

Full series coming soon!

Writing through the Wardrobe is part of the new series Creative Writing Through Literature. Purchase the whole series or explore one of the lecture sets for your homeschool:

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Lesson Exercises (PDF)—coming soon!




Jonathan Rogers


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Sample Lessons

Sample Exercises

Writing Exercise #1

Your suggested writing exercise for this lesson revolves around narration and point of view.

In Luke 15, Jesus tells the Parable of the Prodigal Son using an omniscient narrator. The narrator sometimes shows things from the younger brother’s perspective, sometimes from the older brother’s perspective, and sometimes from the father’s perspective (though the narrator doesn’t really get into close third-person except possibly with the younger brother, when we get a little peek at his inner monologue).

Your writing exercise is to retell this familiar story from the point of view of one of two main characters.

Retell the parable using the older brother as a first-person narrator.  Or, retell the parable in close third-person from the perspective of the father.

Remember, whether you’re writing in first-person or close third-person, you’re only showing and telling what your point-of-view character can see and hear. You have the option of telling what’s going on inside your point-of-view character’s head, but you can also choose only to show what your character sees by looking out. That’s up to you. However, according to the rules of close third-person and first-person narration, you can only get inside the head of one character (your POV character).

Writing Exercise #2

In one paragraph, describe a person (fictional or real). But here’s the catch: You can’t describe the character directly. You can only describe one room in the character’s house. To put it another way, describe a room in such a way that the reader feels that he or she knows the person who lives there.


  1. Narration and Point of View
  2. Inversion and Juxtaposition, Characterization
  3. Showing and Telling, Description
  4. Dramatic Irony
  5. Exposition
  6. Some Guidelines for Dialogue
  7. More on Dialogue and Characterization
  8. Description and Figurative Language
  9. Desire, Choice, Consequence
  10. Concision
  11. More on Figurative Language
  12. Symbolism
  13. Character-Driven Action
  14. World-Building
  15. Action and Motion
  16. Allegory
  17. Slowing Down
  18. Abundance


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