Elements of Fiction
(Use as a study tool)
Story Elements /
Elements of Narrative
● A story is a sequence of events that
unfolds events in a logical order. It is also
known as a narrative.
● Story Elements:
○ the basic parts that make up a story
○ “Five Things” on YouTube
○ Plot, Character, Conflict, Theme, Setting
(Yes, these are the five things!)
Plot is the literary element that describes the structure of
a story. It shows arrangement of events and actions
within a story.
Plot is the series of events in the story and
how it unfolds.
● Exposition - tells setting and characters
● Rising Action - learn about the problem
● Climax - a turn of events
● Falling action- the effect of the climax
● Resolution - how the conflict is resolved
*Jack and Jill Example on YouTube
Flocabulary Plot Song Here
Exposition: the start of the story,
the situation before the action starts
Rising Action: the series of
conflicts and crisis in the story that
lead to the climax
Climax: the turning point, the most
intense moment—either mentally
or in action
Falling Action: all of the
action which follows the
Resolution: the conclusion, the
tying together of all of the threads
● The problem or struggle faced by the
characters in a story
● External conflict- a conflict between character
and an outside force- another character, a
group, nature, society, fate- for example-
character vs. nature
● Internal conflict-a conflict or problem within a
character- character vs. self
The struggle between two forces in the story.
The cause of the main problem.
Internal Conflict - man vs. self, man vs. fate
External Conflict - man vs. man,
man vs. nature,
Conflict is the dramatic struggle
between two forces in a story.
Without conflict, there is no plot.
Plot: Types of Conflict
Character vs Nature
Character vs Society
Character vs Self
Character vs Character
Plot: Character vs. Character Conflict
This type of conflict finds the main character in
conflict with another character, human or not human.
“The new one is the most beautiful of all; he is so young
and pretty.” And the old swans bowed their heads before
Then he felt quite ashamed, and hid his head under his
wing; for he did not know what to do, he was so happy,
and yet not at all proud. He had been persecuted and
despised for his ugliness, and now he heard them say he
was the most beautiful of all the birds.
The Ugly Duckling by Hans Christian Anderson
Plot: Character vs. Nature Conflict
This type of conflict finds the main character in conflict
with the forces of nature, which serve as the antagonist.
It´s a Truffula Seed.
It´s the last one of all!
You´re in charge of the last of the Truffula Seeds.
And Truffula Trees are what everyone needs.
Plant a new Truffula. Treat it with care.
Give it clean water. And feed it fresh air.
Grow a forest. Protect it from axes that hack.
Then the Lorax
and all of his friends
may come back.
The Lorax by Dr. Seuss
Plot: Character vs. Society Conflict
This type of conflict has the main character in conflict
with a larger group: a community, society, culture, etc.
“I’m tired of living in a hole,” said Jenny.
“Let’s fight for freedom!” cried Bouncer. “We’ll be
soldiers! Rough-riding Rowdies! I’ll be the general and
The Island of the Skog by Steven Kellogg
Plot: Character vs. Self Conflict
In this type of conflict, the main character experiences
some kind of inner conflict.
Finally, Sam’s father said, “Go to bed now. But before you
go to sleep, Sam, tell yourself the difference between REAL
Sam, Bangs & Moonshine by Evaline Ness
● The most exciting point of a story, where the
action is at its greatest point and the story
begins to change or turn in another direction
● The climax of the novel Holes is when the
characters realize that Camp Green Lake is not
a legitimate juvenile facility.
● Where and When the story takes place.
● Setting gives us a context for understanding a story.
● For example, science fiction takes place in the future. If
you didn’t know when, you wouldn’t fully understand.
● EX: The Watson’s Go to Birmingham takes place in
1963. A reader might not understand some of the
references and events without knowing the history.
The “people” (human or non-human) in the
story who carry out the action.
PROTAGONIST - the main character; “hero”
ANTAGONIST - the character(s), entity, or
force that is in conflict with the main
Static characters do NOT change
Dynamic characters DO change
● A static character is one who remains
unchanged throughout a book or story. Scar
was a static character in The Lion King.
● A dynamic character is changed in the course
of a book or story. Simba changed a great deal
in The Lion King, so that makes him a dynamic
STATIC AND DYNAMIC
● Characters can be major- having important
significance to the story OR minor, having minor
importance to the story.
● TRAITS-A quality or qualities of a particular
character that identify what the character is like
● For example in Charlotte’s Web, the reader comes
to understand that Charlotte is kind, not because
the author says so, but because over and over
again, the reader sees her treating the other
animals with kindness.
● The central message or idea - a universal
understanding or lesson
● Some universal themes are:
Good triumphs over evil.
Love conquers all.
Hope springs eternal.
What goes around comes around.
● The narrative is the writing or speech that tells
● The narrator is the person who actually tells
NARRATIVE / NARRATOR
● Events are told by a character in the story
● The narrative will read, “I sat at my wooden
desk, looking up at that huge circle with its
eternally trapped hands, and cried.” from The
Year of Fog, Michelle Richmond
FIRST PERSON POINT OF VIEW
● The events of the story are told by someone
outside of the story
● The narrative will read, “Armpit sighed as he
set the phone back in its cradle. Maybe he was
crazy.” from Small Steps, Louis Sachar
THIRD PERSON POINT OF VIEW
● Why did the author write the selection? What
did the author hope to achieve? Does the
author have an agenda, does he want to sell
the reader something or persuade the reader to
see things from his perspective?
Author’s Purpose: P.I.E.
Author’s Purpose: It’s as easy as P.I.E.
PERSUADE - convince the reader to think or
act a certain way
INFORM - share information
ENTERTAIN - entertain the reader
● A conclusion reached by the reader, based on
the available information in the text
TEXT EVIDENCE + BACKGROUND KNOWLEDGE
● We can infer that the three bears were very
trusting since they left their house open and
their bowls of porridge out on the table.