ELEMENTS OF FICTION
The six major elements of fiction are character, plot, point of view, setting, style, and theme. 1. Character -- A figure in a literary work (personality, gender, age, etc). E. M. Forester makes a distinction between flat and round characters. Flat characters are types or caricatures defined by a single idea of quality, whereas round characters have the three-dimensional complexity of real people. 2. Plot –- the major events that move the action in a narrative. It is the sequence of major events in a story, usually in a cause-effect relation. 3. Point of View -- the vantage point from which a narrative is told. A narrative is typically told from a first-person or third-person point of view. In a narrative told from a first-person perspective, the author tells the story through a character who refers to himself or herself as "I." Third –person narratives come in two types: omniscient and limited. An author taking an omniscient point of view assumes the vantage point of an all-knowing narrator able not only to recount the action thoroughly and reliably but also to enter the mind of any character in the work or any time in order to reveal his or her thoughts, feelings, and beliefs directly to the reader. An author using the limited point of view recounts the story through the eyes of a single character (or occasionally more than one, but not all or the narrator would be an omniscient narrator). 4. Setting –- That combination of place, historical time, and social milieu that provides the general background for the characters and plot of a literary work. The general setting of a work may differ from the specific setting of an individual scene or event. 5.Style -- The author’s type of diction (choice of words), syntax (arrangement of words), and other linguistic features of a work. 6. Theme(s) -- The central and dominating idea (or ideas) in a literary work. The term also indicates a message or moral implicit in any work of art.
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