3 Plot What happens in the story? What major events take place in the story as a result of the conflict?How do the characters’ interactions heighten the tension of the conflict that exists?What external impulses heighten the conflict – weather, war, separation, illness, etc.?How is the main problem solved?How are the protagonists obstacles finally overcome?Is the situation pleasantly resolved, or is it resolved negatively?What events form the stories climax?Does the protagonist solve his own problem? Is it solved by an external force?How does the story end?Were you satisfied with the resolution?Does the solution of the conflict affect each individual character?Does the ending make any kind of judgments?
4 ExpositionThe part of the story (usually near the beginning) in which the characters are introduced, the background is explained, and the setting is described.SettingCharacterization – Ways in which the writer develops a believable character; describing physical appearance; sharing thoughts, actions, and dialogue; revealing what others in the story think about a character.
5 Characters Who is the story about? Is the character flat or round? The Protagonist ( the hero/heroine or “the good guy”)The Antagonist (the villain or “the bad guy”)Is the character flat or round?How much do we know about the character?Does the author provide a lot of details about him or her?Is the character static or dynamic?Does the character change or stay the same?
6 Setting Where does the story take place? What is the mood or atmosphere?What words or phrases does the author use to create the atmosphere?Imagery – the collection of images within a literary work which are used to evoke atmosphere, mood, tension.Figurative Language – a word or phrase that departs from everyday literal language for the sake of comparison, emphasis, clarity, or freshness.Common examples of figurative language include similes, metaphors, hyperbole, and idioms.
7 Rising actionThe central part of the story in which various problems arise.Increases tensionLeads to the climax
8 ConflictThe basic tension, predicament, or challenge that propels a story's plotWhat does the protagonist want?Does he attempt to overcome something physical or emotional?Is the conflict external (having to do with the physical world)?Is the conflict internal (taking place in his mind and emotions)?Do his objectives or goals change throughout the story?There are four types of conflict:Character vs. CharacterCharacter vs. SocietyCharacter vs. NatureCharacter vs. Himself
9 Theme What does the main character learn? How has he or she changed by the end of the story or after specific events?What is the main idea of the story?Is there a universal theme?Does the story offer an answer to a particular problem associated with the theme or does it call the reader’s attention without trying to solve anything?Tone – the author’s feeling(s) as expressed in the writing
10 climaxThe climax can be one or many problems that create the high point of the story; the peak of conflictOften viewed as the turning point of the storyConflicts begin to be resolved
11 Falling action The tension decreases Conflicts continue towards resolution
12 Denouement The conflict has been resolved Indicates the ending Also known as the “resolution”Pronounced Day-noo-moh