Story Elements - Terms and Definitions
Terms in this set (24)
A character who changes inside as a result of what happens to him
Main character in a dramatic or narrative work, usually trying to accomplish some objective or working toward some goal.
A person who actively opposes or is hostile to someone or something
These characters are almost always flat or two-dimensional characters. They have only one or two striking qualities. They do not grow or change by the end of the story.
Point of View
The perspective from which a story is told
First Person Point of View
A story where the narrator is a character in the story, and the author uses pronouns such as "I", "me", "we", and "us".
Second Person Point of View
The narrator tells the story using the pronouns "you", "your," and "yours" to address a reader or listener directly.
Third-Person Objective Point of View
The narrator is an outsider who can report only what he or she sees and hears. This narrator can tell us what is happening, but he can't tell us the thoughts of the characters.
Third-Person Limited Point of View
The narrator is an outsider who sees into the mind of one of the characters.
Third-Person Omniscent Point of View
The narrator is an all-knowing outsider who can enter the minds of more than one of the characters.
Person vs. Person Conflict
A conflict that pits one person against another.
Person vs. Nature Conflict
A run-in with the forces of nature, such as a hurricane or earthquake.
Person vs. Society Conflict
The values and customs of society are against the main character.
Person vs. Supernatural Conflict
A supernatural force or entity provides the conflict against the main character.
Person vs. Self Conflict
Internal conflict, such as worrying about failing at an intended goal.
A narrative device that hints at coming events; often builds suspense or anxiety in the reader.
When someone says the opposite of what they really mean, usually as a use of sarcasm.
When the opposite of what is expected to happen comes true.
When the audience or reader knows more than one or more of the characters know.
The author's attitude, stated or implied, toward a subject. Examples: pessimistic, optimistic, earnest, serious, bitter, and humorous.
The climate or feeling in a literary work. The mood changes during the course of a novel. Examples: happy, sad, energetic, and hopeful.
An object that stands for something else. A dove is a symbol for peace.
The main idea or underlying meaning of a literary work. A theme may be stated or implied. It is the message that the author wants the reader to walk away knowing such as "Crime doesn't pay."
When a story starts out during present time, but then flashes back to an earlier time period.