The Elements of Fiction:
  Important literary devices
• The setting is where the story takes place.
Setting includes the following..
  + geographical location (ex. California, Paris)
  + the time period (ex. 1990, WWII)
  + the socio-economic condition of the area (ex.
      wealthy suburbs, inner city)
  + the specific room, building, etc. (ex. a prep
      school, a log cabin)

• Can also be used to tell the reader about a
 That evening T.J. Smelled the air, his nostrils dilating with
 the odor of the earth under his feet. “It‟s spring,” he said,
 and there was a gladness rising in his voice that made us all
 feel the same way.
 “It‟s mighty late for spring”…we were all sniffing the air, too,
 trying to smell it the way that T.J. did, and I can still
 remember the sweet odor of the earth under our feet. It
 was the first time in my life that spring and spring earth had
 meant anything to me.
                                “Antaeus” by Borden Deal
• Can be used for the atmosphere of the story.
• During the whole of a dull, dark and soundless
  day, when the clouds hung oppressively low
  from the heavens, I have been passing alone,
  on horseback, through a singularly dreary track
  of country.”
      “The Fall of the House of Usher” by Edgar
  Allan Poe
• The people (or animals, things, etc. presented as people) appearing
  in a literary work.

• Round Characters are convincing, true to life. They have many
  different and sometimes even contradictory personality traits.
• Flat Characters are stereotyped, shallow, and often symbolic.
  They have only one or two personality traits.
• Static Characters do not change in the course of the story.
• Dynamic Characters undergo some kind of change or growth
  during the story, usually because of something that happens to

• Protagonist: the main character in a
  literary work.
• Antagonist: the character who opposes
  the protagonist.
Methods of Characterization
• Direct Characterization: the author develops
    the personality of a character through direct
•   “Jack had been in basic training in Florida and
    Dottie was there on vacation with her parents.
    They‟d met on a beach and struck op a
    conversation. Dottie was the talker, the
    outgoing one – the extrovert. Jack was too shy
    to say much around girls at all.”
             “Furlough – 1944” by Harry Mazer
Methods of Characterization
• Indirect Characterization: Revealing
   a character‟s personality through…
1. The character‟s thoughts, words, or
2. The comments of other characters
3. The character‟s physical appearance
Indirect characterization through a
      character‟s THOUGHTS.

• “Moonbeam closed his eyes and
 pretended to sleep all the way to
 Bamfield. He couldn‟t believe what he had
 gotten himself into. How had this
 happened? He‟d never held a gun in his
 life, much less gone hunting for animals.”
 “Moonbeam Dawson and the Killer Bear”
 by Jean Okimoto
Indirect characterization through a
       character‟s WORDS.
• “It was Kenny Griffey smiling complacently.
  „Miss Bird sent me after you „cause you been
  gone six years. You‟re in trouble…yer
  constipated!‟ Kenny chortled gleefully. „Wait „till
  I tell Caaathy!”

“Here There Be Tygers” by Stephen King
Indirect characterization through a
       character‟s ACTIONS.
• “The boy held his breath; he wondered
 whether his father would hear his heart
 beating…Through a crack in the counter
 he could see his father where he stood,
 one hand held high to his stiff collar…”
              “I Spy” by Graham Greene
 Indirect characterization through
• Miss Kenney was young and blond and
 had a boyfriend who picked her up after
 school in a blue Camaro.”
 “Here There Be Tygers” by Stephen King

• Plot is the literary element that describes
  the structure of the story. It shows the
  arrangement of events and actions within
  a story.
1. Exposition
• This usually occurs at the beginning of a short
  story. Here the characters are introduced. We
  also learn about the setting of the story. Most
  importantly, we are introduced to the main
  conflict (main problem).
2. Rising Action
• This part of the story begins to
 develop the conflict(s). A
 building of interest or suspense
3. Climax
• This is the turning point of the story.
 Usually the main character comes
 face to face with a conflict. The main
 character will change in some way.
4. Falling Action
• All loose ends
 of the plot are
 tied up. The
 conflict(s) and
 climax are
 taken care of.
5. Resolution
• The story
 comes to a
 Putting It All Together
1. Exposition         Beginning of
2. Rising Action

                    Middle of Story
3. Climax

4. Falling Action
                         End of Story
5. Resolution
Elements of Plot: Conflict

• Conflict is the dramatic struggle between
 two opposing forces in the story. Without
 conflict, there would be no plot.
         Plot: Types of Conflict
Interpersonal Conflicts:
                           Human vs. Human
Human vs. Society

                           Human vs. Nature

Internal Conflict:
     Human vs. Self
             Plot: Theme

• Theme is the central idea or central
  message in the story. It usually contains
  some insight into the human condition –
  telling something about humans and life.
• The theme can be stated directly or
  implied by the events and actions of the
  character in the story.
             Point of View
• The perspective from which the story is
• Who is telling the story? (For example, is
  it a player on the opposing team,
  someone watching the game)
• How do we know what is happening? (For
  example, does a character tell us?)
      Omniscient Point of View
• The author is telling the story directly.
• “Myop carried a short, knobby stick. She struck
  out at random chicken she liked, and worked out
  the beat of a song in the fence. She felt light
  and good in the warm sun.”
            “The Flowers” by Alice Walker
      Limited Omniscient Point of
• Third person, told from the viewpoint of a character in
    the story.
•   “They all laughed, and while they were laughing, the
    quiet boy moved his bare foot on the sidewalk and
    merely touched, brushed the red ants that were
    scurrying about on the sidewalk. Secretly, his eyes
    shining, while his parents chatted with the old man, he
    saw the ants hesitate, quiver, and lie still on the
                       “Fever Dream” by Ray Bradbury
First Person Point of View
• Told from the viewpoint of a character using
•   “Remembering – and this time it didn‟t hurt – a
    quiet, defeated looking, sixteen year old whose
    hair needed cutting badly and who had a
    frightened expression to them. And I decided I
    could tell people.”
                    The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

• A symbol represents an idea, quality, or
  concept larger than itself.
• A lion can symbolize courage.
• A red rose can symbolize love.
• A journey can symbolize life.
                              Elements of Fiction
State Standards: Reading 3.3, 3.4, 3.7
                                 Parts of Plot:
2.Rising Action:
4.Falling Action (denouement)
5. Resolution:
6. Conflict: Man vs. _______
7. Theme:
8. Types of characterization used (Direct or indirect)
          1. ___________ Example:
          2. ___________ Example:
          3. ___________ Example:
9. Setting: When: ___________
              Where: _________
10. Point of View:

• The feeling created in the reader by a
  literary work or passage.
• Can usually be described in a single word
     • Scary
     • Funny
     • lighthearted

• The writer‟s attitude toward his or her
 audience and subject.

• The descriptive or figurative language use
 in literature to create word pictures for the
  – The tree bowed in the wind

• The implied meaning of a word.
• Man, I worked hard and made a lot of
 dough last night.

                     OR                  ?

• The dictionary definition of a word.
• Lake=              an actual body of water

• Lake = a vacation spot
          your cabin on a lake
Rhetorical Question

• A question that is not meant to be
  – Do I look stupid to you?!

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