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Fictional Narrative Writing Short Story Development

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Fictional Narrative Writing. Short Story Development. Narrative Writing. To Entertain To Narrate Something happens to someone, somewhere, sometime. Your story needs to have a plot , at least one character , and a setting for the action. It also needs a point of view and a narrator . - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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Fictional Narrative Writing

Short Story Development

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Narrative Writing

To Entertain To Narrate

Something happens to someone, somewhere,


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• Your story needs to have a plot, at least one character, and a setting for the action.

• It also needs a point of view and a narrator.

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Create a plot with conflict Most plots are based on problems. Characters may have conflicts with other

characters, society, nature, or even with themselves.

If you can keep your characters working to solve problems, your readers will stay interested.

Is your character stranded on a distant planet, lost in a jungle, struggling to win a baseball championship, or building a secret hideaway? Make sure the character is challenged by his or her situation.

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Writing a story conflict and resolution

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Story conflict and resolution• One of the satisfactions we get from reading

stories and watching them on TV, in the movies, or in the theater, is seeing the successful ending, or resolution, to the conflict.

While EVERY minor conflict in a story might not have a happy ending, the MAIN CONFLICT usually is resolved in a way which satisfies the audience.

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Story Outline Name: _______________________________________ Title: __________________________________________________ Author: __________________________________________________

Setting Where: __________________________________________________ When: __________________________________________________

Characters Main Characters: _________________________________________

_________________________________________________________ Other Characters: ________________________________________


Main Problem____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Solution to the Main Problem________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

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Plot Map

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Think of each of these plots:• Creatures from another planet are trying to

take over the Earth.• A sick young girl is losing her will to live.• A crazy prowler is terrorizing a neighborhood.• A MMA fighter is trying to regain his title from

an arrogant young opponent.• Victims of a shipwreck are struggling to survive

on a lone island.**Each plot involves a conflict…a struggle or

confrontation of some kind**

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Writing satisfying resolutionsThink of a satisfying ending for each of the plots.

Match it with the correct conflict.

• Creatures from another galaxy

• Sick girl

• Crazy prowler

•MMA fighter

• Shipwreck victims

Between a person or people, and nature (person vs nature)

Between groups (person vs person)

Between an individual and a group (person vs society)

Between two people (person vs peson)

Within one person (person vs self)

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PlotsDirections: Think of at least three more plot ideas for each of the conflict types

below. KEEP IN MIND ALL OF THE GENRES OF FICTION – science fiction, historical fiction, mystery, myth, fable, fairy tale, etc.

• Between a person or people, and nature (person vs nature)

• Between groups (person vs person)

• Between an individual and a group (person vs society)

• Between two people (person vs peson)

• Within one person (person vs self)

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Describe a clear setting for the action

• The reader wants to know when and where the action takes place.

• Details about the setting should include information about time of day, weather, landscape, buildings or other structures, etc.

• Is the action taking place now, 100 years ago, 100 years in the future…?

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Setting The setting – a description of the place, the

weather, the time – helps to create a mood or give information about the characters.

One day Scrooge was busy in his countinghouse while his clerk was copying letters in another room.

Did you learn much about Scrooge, his clerk, or the day?

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Setting 2 Read the passage as Charles Dickens wrote it.

Once upon a time – of all the good days in the year, upon a Christmas Eve – old Scrooge sat busy in his countinghouse. It was cold, bleak, biting, foggy weather; and the city clocks had only just gone three, but it was quite dark already.

The door of Scrooge’s countinghouse was open, that he might keep his eye upon his clerk, who, in a dismal little cell beyond, a sort of tank, was copying letters. Scrooge had a very small fire, but the clerk’s fire was so very much smaller that it looked like one coal.


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Describe your Character(s) Readers want to know what the

characters look like, sound like, think, and feel.

Details include their physical features, clothing, habits, likes, dislikes, etc.

If your story has more than one character, make them different enough that the reader can tell them apart by their actions as well as their words.

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Characterization• Direct Characterization – the author tells facts

and details about each character

• Indirect Characterization – the author shows the character’s qualities through description in 3 ways:– What the character says – What others say about the character– Through showing the character’s actions

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Indirect CharacterizationDear Mr. Birkway,

Here it is: my summer journal. As you can see, got a little carried away. The problem is this, though. I don't want you to read it.

I really mean it. I just wanted you to know I did it. I didn't want you to think I was one of those kids who says, "Oh yeah, I did it, but I lost it/my dog ate it/my little brother dropped it in the toilet.

But please Pleeeassse Don't Read It! How was I to know all this stuff was going to happen this summer? How was I to know Carl Ray would come to town and turn everything into an odyssey? And how was I to know about Alex...? Sigh.

Please Don't Read It. I mean it.

Sincerely, Mary Lou Finney

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Indirect Characterization 2Tuesday, June 12 I wish someone would tell me exactly what a journal is. When I

asked my mother, she said, "Well, it's like a diary only different." That helps. She was going to explain more, but. Mrs. Furtz (the lady who just moved in across the street) called to say, that my brother Dennis was throwing eggs at her house, and my mother went berserk so she didn't finish telling me. How am I supposed to write a journal if I don't even know what one is?

I wouldn't be doing this anyway, except that Mrs. Zollar asked me to. She's an English teacher. She asked us to keep a journal this summer and bring it in (in September) to our new English teacher.

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This journal is not as hard as I thought. I just hope I am doing it right. It would be terrible to do it all summer and then take it in and have someone look at it and say, "Oh, but this isn't a journal, dear."

I tried to ask Mrs. Zollar a million questions about the journal when she gave it to us, but Alex Cheevey said, "Geez. We don't want to know too much about it. Then we'll have to do it right. Can't you ever keep quiet?"

And now I will reflect on that. I used to think Alex Cheevey was cute, because his skin is always a little pink, like he's just been running a race, and his hair is always clean and shiny, and once we had to do an oral report together and even though I did most of the work, he patted me on the back when we were done, as if he realized what a good job I did, and he is certainly the best player on the basketball team and so graceful when he runs and dribbles the ball. But now, as I reflect on it, I see he is really a jerk.


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Direct Characterization• Sam Finney (whose age I am not allowed to tell you) is the father. He is a

pretty regular father. Sometimes he likes us and sometimes we drive him crazy. When we are driving him crazy, he usually goes out in the garden and pulls some weeds. When he is at work, he is a geologist and spends his days drawing maps.

• Sally Finney (whose age I am also not allowed to tell you or anyone else) is the mother. She also is a pretty regular mother. Sometimes she drools all over us and sometimes she asks my father if there isn't something he can do about us. When we are driving her crazy, she usually cries a little. When she is at work, she is an oral historian and spends her days tape-recording stories that elderly people tell her. I think that by the time she gets home to us, she is a little tired of hearing people talk.

• Maggie Finney (seventeen years old) is the oldest daughter. She's my sister. She is your basic boy-crazy, fingernail-painting, mopey ole sister with whom I have the misfortune of sharing a room. She does not like me to touch her things.

• Mary Lou Finney (thirteen years old) is the next oldest. That's me. I don't know what I am. I am waiting to find out.

• .


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The girl on the left…

1. What do you think her hobbies and interests are?

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Characterization 3

How would she like doing this:

2. How do we know?

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Characterization 4

How would she like doing this:

3. How do we know?

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Choose a point of view

• A story can be narrated from a single person’s point of view using the 1st person (I) point of view, or from a more universal point of view using 3rd person (he/she) narration.

• The important thing is to be consistent!

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Give physical details through your characters’ senses

• As the action progresses, let the reader know what the characters see, hear, and feel. In some stories, you may even want your characters to describe what they taste or smell.

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Let characters speak their own words (dialogue)

Quoted material can be attributed to a speaker in 3 ways.

› Before the quote: She said, “No! I won’t eat broccoli-ripple ice cream.”

› In the middle of the quote: “No!” she said. “I won’t eat broccoli-ripple ice cream.”

› After the quote: “No! I won’t eat broccoli-ripple ice cream,” she said.

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Begin a new paragraph whenever a speaker finishes. (Indent!)

Commas and periods ALWAYS go inside the quotation marks.

Make sure the dialogue sounds realistic. You might find it helpful to whisper your

characters’ words to yourself as you write.

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Dialogue PracticeDirections: Edit each of the following sentences to include

correct dialogue punctuation.

1. I can’t get this to work Rebekah said.

2. How Stephen wondered does this make sense?

3. Zach looked out the window and announced I love snow!

4. Madison yelled watch out or you’ll get hurt.

5. Wow Pam admitted this is so much fun.

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Dialogue PracticeDirections: Use the comic strip to develop a paragraph using

dialogue and quotations, describing what each character is doing, while he is saying his lines. Ex. “Hey, Snoopy, Look!” Charlie Brown yelled as he ran across the yard.