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Elements of the Short Story

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1 Elements of the Short Story

2 Setting The time and place of the action of a story
Setting includes the following: The geographical location The time period The specific building, room and so on . . .

3 Mood The feeling or atmosphere that a writer creates for the reader. A cold wind sliced across the silent and empty graveyard. Stanton shivered and glanced up at the moon, a pale silver behind dark clouds. He heard footsteps, then more footsteps, and his stomach knotted. Shouldn’t have come, he thought. What mood does this paragraph convey to the reader?

4 Characters Protagonist – The main character in a story; the character who is involved in the central conflict of the story Antagonist – principal character or force in opposition of the protagonist

5 Characters Static – one who remains the same throughout the story
Dynamic – one who undergoes important changes as the plot unfolds

6 The series of events in a story
Plot The series of events in a story

7 Elements of Plot Exposition – introduces setting and characters; introduces the conflict Rising Action – presents complications that intensify the conflict and builds suspense Climax – the turning point and the moment of greatest suspense; makes the outcome of the conflict clear Falling Action – eases the suspense; reveals the outcome of the story’s climax; shows how the main character resolves the conflict Resolution – reveals the final outcome and ties up loose ends

8 Flashback An account of a conversation, an episode, or an event that happened before the beginning of the story

9 Conflict Struggle between opposing forces
Internal conflict – a struggle within a character’s mind. The struggle usually centers on a choice or decision the character must make External conflict – a clash between a character and an outside force, such as another character, society, or a force of nature

10 Point of View First person – narrator is character in the story
Third person – narrative voice is outside the story Third person omniscient – all-knowing point of view Third person limited – narrator tells what only one character thinks

11 Foreshadowing Writer’s use of hints or clues to suggest events that will occur later in a story

12 Simile A comparison between two unlike things using “like” or “as.” Example: The river winds down the valley like a long, skinny snake.

13 Metaphor A comparison between two unlike things without using “like” or “as.” Ex: Time is money.

14 Personification Giving human characteristics to inanimate objects or abstract ideas. Ex: The wind cried in the dark.

15 What does the feather symbolize for Dumbo?
Symbolism An object, character, figure, or color that is used to represent something other than itself. What does the feather symbolize for Dumbo?

16 Allusion A reference to the Bible, history, or another famous piece of literature. In The Hunchback of Notre Dame, the gargoyle Laverne tells a flock of pigeons to “Fly my pretties! Fly, Fly!” alluding to the Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz.

17 Tone The writer’s or speaker’s attitude toward a subject, character, or audience; conveyed through the author’s choice of words and detail. Tone can be: Serious Humorous Sarcastic Indifferent Etc.

18 Theme An underlying message about life or human nature that a writer wants the reader to understand; the main idea of the story

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