I have written enough on the subject and yet I find aspirants repeating the same mistakes while writing PPDT and TAT stories. I am writing this article to once again clarify and explain the secret of writing a good story.

  • We assessors commonly come across three different categories of aspirants. In the first category, about 10% of the aspirants perceive the image in totality and grasp every detail and weave a story connecting the finer details of the image. They are considered the best. The second category includes about 30% candidates who broadly perceive the image and make a story away from the image but remotely connect it to the image either in the beginning or the end of the story. Finally, the vast majority, about 60% candidates, write synthetic or preconceived stories which have no or very less connection with the image. No wonder, 50-60% candidates get screened out.
  • Further, recollect the briefing. You are asked to perceive the image and write a story based on what must have led to the situation you perceived in the image and what is the likely outcome. It clearly means that there are three parts of the story. Firstly, what is the situation perceived by you, what must have led to it and what is the final outcome? It clearly means you need to image the beginning and the end of the story and the main theme must emerge from the image. There is where most candidates make a mistake. They either position the image in the beginning of the story or the end of it. Whereas, it must be in the center of the story.
  • Going further, several candidates make stories pertaining to defense even if the image is nowhere suggesting a defense theme. This is incorrect and projects limited imagination. Avoid making stories based on defense unless the image is clearly depicting so. Similarly, every time one sees water and a person inside makes a story about drowning and rescue. This can at best be graded as a routine idea but definitely not a good idea.
  • Several candidates also try to make the main character do extraordinary things that are not common such as forming NGOs, getting a bridge made, removing potholes removed from all the roads etc. These are branded as wishful stories.
  • In a nutshell, a good story is the one which is as close to the image, practical and simple. Please remember, OLQs come out even in a simple story. There is no need to make extraordinary stories.

Jai Hind!