GENRES AT A GLANCE FICTION POETRY DRAMA NONFICTION TYPES OF MEDIA
FICTION Fiction is narrative writing that springs from an author’s imagination. Examples of fiction Short stories Novels Novellas
FICTION At the heart of fiction is NARRATIVE, the telling of a story. Although fiction can be inspired by real events and people, it is mainly the product of a writer’s imagination. Fictional stories can take any of a wide variety of forms, including science fiction, mystery, romance and historical fiction.
FICTION Regardless of the form, a work of fiction usually is one of these types: Short story – often focuses on a single event or incident and usually can be read at one setting. Novel – is an extended work of fiction. Because it is much longer than a short story, a novel gives a writer space to develop a wider range of characters and a more complex plot. Novella – is longer than a short story but shorter than a novel. Most novellas focus on a limited number of characters and a short time span.
POETRY Poetry is the most compact form of literature. Words are chosen and arranged to create powerful effects. Examples of poetry Haiku Sonnets Narrative poems Lyric poems
POETRY Robert Frost wrote “Poetry is a way of taking life by the throat.” These words capture the impact of poetry on both writers and readers. In poetry, words and sounds are chosen to convey meaning and emotion. What you will notice first is its FORM, or arrangement on a page. Usually poems are divided into LINES, which are arranged into STANZAS.
POETRY The way a poem sounds – its RHYTHMS or its predictable RHYMES, for example, is part of its effect. Language delivers other powerful effects. IMAGERY, which consists of language that recreates sensory experiences, helps readers see, hear, and feel what a poem describes.
Drama Drama is meant to be performed. Characters and conflicts are developed through dialogue and action, Examples of drama Comedies Tragedies Farces
DRAMA Characters in conflict are at the heart of the drama, just as they are in fiction. But since drama is meant to be performed for an audience rather than read, the plot is carried by DIALOGUE and ACTION – what the characters say and do. Dramas are usually divided into SCENES, with each scene set in a different time or place. In long plays, scenes are grouped into ACTS.
DRAMA With their heroes, villains, and sets, dramas have been captivating audiences since ancient times. However, dramas make good reading. To help yourself visualize a drama, you need to consider not only the dialogue but also the STAGE DIRECTIONS – the writer’s instructions for the actors, the director, and the other people working on a play.
NONFICTION Nonfiction is prose writing that deals with real people, events, and places. Examples include Essays Speeches Autobiographies Biographies News articles Feature articles
NONFICTION AND INFORMATIONAL TEXT When you see the word NONFICTION, you probably expect to find what is called LITERARY NONFICTION, such as biographies, speeches, and essays. NONFICTION also includes INFORMATIONAL TEXTS, such as news articles and train schedules, which provide factual information. Because your encounter informational texts all the time, you should know what to expect from them.
TYPES OF MEDIA Media are forms of communication that reach large numbers of people. They include many subgenres, each with its own forms and characteristics. Examples include Feature films Advertising Web sites
TYPES OF MEDIA You may not think of media as literature, but learning how to “read” the media is a key part of being literate in today’s world. From screaming headlines at the checkout counter to in-your-face advertising, all media messages have been constructed for a purpose – to grab your attention, entertain you, or influence your decisions. Becoming media literate starts with knowing the basics and thinking critically about ALL messages in this media-saturated age.
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