A short story contains all the same literary features as a novel, in a shorter format. Compression: unnecessary details and information are left out. Everything is important: one single detail can deeply affect a character or have many consequences on the plot.
Plot Plot is different from Story Plot: the structure and relationship of actions and events in a work of fiction Story: what happens in a work of fiction
Constituents of the Plot: Exposition:The situation that the protagonist finds himself/herself in at the beginning of the story (background information) Trigger Point:An event that causes the action to rise Rising Action:The actions, events or thoughts which take place throughout the story. These incidents or conflicts build up with increasing tension to the climax Climax:The point in the story where the protagonist has to make a decision or take action that will solve the conflict (for better or worse). After the climax there are no more conflicts. Falling Action After the climax is the falling action, made up of the final incidents of the story; it may say more about the climax. Resolution: The resolution is not always explicitly stated but it should be implied so that the reader can move on.
Other Elements of Plot Suspense - a state of uncertainty or anticipation regarding the outcome of a narrative Foreshadowing - the planting of hints about what will happen later in the narrative. A flashback - method of narration where present action is temporarily halted so a reader can witness a past event
Conflict Basic element of the plot Opposition between two forces in a story, the protagonist and the antagonist Types of conflict: 1.Man versus man 2.Man versus nature 3.Man versus society 4.Man versus self
Storytelling technique: who is telling the story? The narrator is not to be confused with the author. Who tells the story and how s/he tells it are critical to interpreting the story. Is the narrator trustworthy? Objective vs. subjective (biased)
Types of Point of View First person: uses the subjective “I”. The narrator is a character in the story. Third person: uses the objective “he, she, they”. The narrator is an outsider. - Omniscient : We are told everything about the story, including the thoughts and feelings of all the characters, and even information in the author's mind which no character knows. - Limited omniscient: We are told the thoughts and feelings of only one character (sometimes, but very seldom, of two or three characters.
Character types The protagonist: the central character (person, animal, or personified object) in the plot's conflict. It is not always a “good” or likeable character. The antagonist: the force in conflict with the protagonist. Foil is a character whose traits are in direct contrast to those of the protagonist. A stereotype is a character who possesses expected traits of a group rather than being an individual.
Character Development A flat character is not fully developed; we know only one side of the character. A round character is fully-developed, with many traits--bad and good--shown in the story. We feel that we know the character so well that he or she has become a real person.
Character Quality A static character is one who does not experience a basic character change during the course of the story. A dynamic character is one who experiences a basic change in character through the events of the story. This change is internal and may be sudden, but the events of the plot should make it seem inevitable.
Characterization We discover what a character is like by: –What the character says –What the character does –What the character looks like –How the character interacts with others –What others think/say about the character
Setting is an extremely powerful tool in story telling as it can be used to dictate the emotions of characters and elicit emotions in the reader as well. Setting: the when, where, and atmosphere (mood) of the story. TAP: Time, Atmosphere, Place Integral setting: essential to the plot Background setting: relatively unimportant
Theme The central abstract idea of a literary work or film Contains a view about life and how people behave. It is expressed as a complete thought. Implicit vs. explicit Author may use irony and/or symbolism to develop the theme
Symbolism A character, and action, a setting, or an object representing something else. E.g. Objects viewed as symbolic may be described in detail, included in the title, referred to frequently, or emphasized at the beginning or ending of the story.
Tone The writer’s implied attitude toward the subject and/or the audience of a literary work. Tone may be formal, informal, intimate, solemn, sombre, playful, serious, ironic, condescending, or many other possible attitudes. Tone and mood are not interchangeable.