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the sequence of events of which a story is composed


the beginning of a story that presents characters, settings, and the problem (sets the stage)

rising action

the events in a story that become increasingly more intense and lead up to the conflict (creates tension)


the point in a story where the main character faces his or her main problem or conflict


any character's problem


the events in a story in which the reader learns just how a character's problem is resolved or figured out (loose ends are tied up)

falling action

the events immediately after the character solves his or her problem in which the story's plot becomes clear


where and when a story takes place


stories about imaginary people and events

obligatory scene

a scene at the very end of the story in which the character is shown to be living "happily ever after"


unexpected turn of events

man versus nature

the main conflict is against a storm, an animal, or some other part of nature

man versus man

the main conflict is against another person

man versus himself

the main conflict is against some kind of emotional, physical, or other kind of internal issue, like fear or a handicap

fantasy setting

a story that is based in unrealistic places (like Narnia) and has unrealistic events (such as magic)

reality setting

a story that is based in a real place and has realistic events (things that can really happen)

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