When I was a spotty little ‘erbert of a Sandman in my second year of secondary school, one of the main projects in English was dubbed the island project. The set up was for whatever reason, the class had won a competition to visit Australia or somewhere for a month and the plane crashed en route. Anyway from there on it was your survival story. Each week you’d be assigned a set up. The first one obviously being details of the crash and subsequent escape from plane and arrival on the island and basically being alone. Second was exploring the island and encountering other survivors… In other words kill off everyone except your friends haha… There on it was hints on survival etc and ultimately eventual rescue. So we had to choose what items you’d salvage from the crash, building a shelter etc… Not quite sure why they wanted such a gloomy set up… It’d make sense if we were also studying Robinson Crusoe at the same time but no…
Anyway, being 12/13 what I wrote was more akin to Boy’s Adventure stories rather than Daniel Dafoe- which I assume was the intent. So rather than day to day struggles of trying to find out what was safe to eat, how to construct things, coping with the trauma of the situation and asking how long we could last, would we and how could we be rescued? Etc, it was running around setting animal traps, rescuing people who fell in the river and were being swept out to sea… Probably not what was expected.
Being a total geek I was a fan of the TV series Blake’s 7 and when it came to naming the island, I looked to Blake’s 7 and used the name Horizon. In terms of Blake’s 7 the episode hit home with fans as it is/was the name of newsletter for the Blake’s 7 appreciation society, though it isn’t a favourite of mine. I chose it because it sounded a little exotic and tried to justify it but being struck by the way the horizon looked as the sun set.
I can’t remember what grade I got. I do remember that when rescued it was by HMS Troutbridge of Navy Lark fame. Or rather as per the sitcom, they ran aground on the island and we helped them out and they were able to use the radio to get help.