The Art of the Storyteller

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“The art of the storyteller is to hold the attention to the reader.” If they are able to grab the whole mind of the reader, they can convey the ideas and themes represented in the story successfully to the audience, and therefore the intension of the writer can be better understood and appreciated. In order to achieve this target, the writers often employ literary techniques, such as foreshadowing, story in story, suspense, etc, to attract and hold the reader’s attention. Usually, the plot itself plays the most important role in holding the reader’s attention, by evoking the interest and curiosity in the reader. Many stories are not simply chronologically-plotted, allowing the writer to set a foreshadowing section, or postpone the revealing of the truth. In the midst of the story, something maybe called up and brought in by the memory of the protagonist, which serves to provide additional information and explanation. In the story The Sacrificial Egg, Julius Obi recalled his conversation with Janet’s mother, and becomes a part of the plot. This part serves to arose the reader’s interest and introduce the superstition, and the theme on it, to the reader. It also becomes a bridge connecting the factual account in the beginning, and the mysterious event happening later,by adding the element of mystery and superstition into the story, so as to hold the reader’s attention, and keep their interest in reading. On the other hand, the viewpoint of narration and the atmosphere set in the story also help hold the attention of the reader. For example, The Persimmon Tree is told in the first person’s narrative viewpoint, so that the feelings and thoughts of the narrator are quite subjective, appealing and persuasive. The opinions in the story are easily conveyed to the reader and the reader feels like the communication with the narrator in the story. The writer of the story allows the reader to share the same feeling and mood with the person in the story, to ensure the full...
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