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The Short Story


The Short Story What is a Short Story? What is a Short Story? In your notebook, write your own definition of what a short story is. Do not write A story that is ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The Short Story

The Short Story
What is a Short Story?
What is a Short Story?
  • In your notebook, write your own definition of
    what a short story is.
  • Do not write A story that is short! Use what
    you know about short stories in the past.
  • Below your definition, brainstorm about short
    stories any words you have learned connected to
    short stories, titles of stories, authors, etc.

The Short StorySome Definitions
  • The short story gives the illusion of life. It
    is a tiny capsule of living, a moment or two in
    the lives of other people.
  • A short story is a story that is under 40,000
    words in length (so, a short story).
  • A short story is a story that can be read in a
    single sitting.
  • but there is much more to the genre called the
    short story!

  • Noun A word that refers to people, places or
  • Common Noun A noun that refers to a general
    person, place, or thing. (e.g. boy, dog, city,
  • Proper Noun A noun that refers to a specific
    person, place, or thing. Proper nouns are
    essentially nouns with names, and are always
    capitalized. (e.g. Johnny, Spot, Saint John, Cue
    for Treason)

Common and Proper Nouns Exercise
  • Write the following words in your notebook. When
    you do, indicate whether each is a Proper Noun
    (PN) or Common Noun (CN).
  • Begin the word with the proper capital or
    lower-case letter.
  • alex sobeys moncton
  • river easter orange
  • hampton high school cd player tim hortons
  • You have 3 minutes to complete this exercise. I
    will be calling people randomly for answers.

  • theme The theme of a story represents what the
    protagonist (main character) and/or reader learns
    about life. It is the message that the author
    is sending through the story the story is the
    medium for the message.

Besides being shorter, how is a short story
different from a novel?
  • Short stories and novels seem to begin in very
    different ways in my mind. With a novel, the
    main characters come first they grow slowly in
    the imagination until I feel I know them well
    Most short stories Ive written seem to be
    triggered off by some event, either in my own
    life or something Ive observed. The characters
    in a short story seem just as real to me as the
    characters in a novel, but I have not seen them,
    in my mind, in as many situations they are
    visualized more in relation to one main

  • One form is not better than the other. They
    simply do not serve the same function When I
    write a novel, I feel rather like a juggler
    trying to keep a dozen themes spinning up there
    in the air. In my short stories, on the other
    hand, there tends to be one central theme.
  • Margaret Laurence

Margaret Laurence
  • Margaret Laurence is a famous Canadian novelist
    one of the core authors in the field known as
    Canadian Literature.
  • In 1986, after a grim diagnosis of lung cancer
    that had spread throughout her body, Laurence
    took her own life in 1987.
  • Her best-known novels are The Stone Angel and
    The Diviners. Her 1966 novel, A Jest of God,
    received the Governor Generals Award for Fiction.

  • genre a class or category having a particular
    form, technique, content, etc. E.g. poetry,
    novels, fantasy, science fiction
  • prose the ordinary form of spoken or written
    language, as distinguished from poetry or verse
  • fiction the class of literature comprising
    works of imaginative narration

The Short Story Genre
  • The Short Story
  • The oldest form of literature.
  • Prose fiction.
  • A distinct genre (like poetry, novels, plays).
  • Every word counts! There is a strong focus on
    word choice, because this is how the author
    prunes and polishes the piece to meet his/her

The Short Story Genre
  • History of the Short Story Genre
  • Ancient Times
  • The Bible Old Testament 750-350 B.C.E.
  • Middle Ages (800-1400 A.D.)
  • Arabia One Thousand and One Nights by
  • Spain Exemplary Tales by Cervantes
  • England Canterbury Tales by Chaucer
  • but in the Middle Ages, the genre had not taken
    shape as a recognizable form.

The Short Story Genre
  • History of the Short Story Genre
  • The modern short story genre took shape in the
    19th century simultaneously in
  • Germany (Hoffman, Brothers Grimm)
  • Russia (Pushkin, Gogol)
  • France (Balzac, DeMaupassant)
  • U.S.A. (Washington Irving, Edgar Allen Poe)
  • The short story became a favorite form of
    entertainment for the emerging middle class.

Initial Short Story Assignment
  • Read the short story assigned to you.
  • Answer the following questions
  • Draw a plot diagram. Label the parts of the
    diagram, and identify the parts of the story.
  • What is the setting of the story? How do you
    know? Use proof from the story.
  • Identify the main conflict of the story.
    Describe that conflict.
  • What purposes does this short story serve?
    Support your answer with proof from the story.
  • What is the theme of this story? Explain how the
    author makes this clear through plot and
    character development.

The Short Story as Art
  • Purpose and Audience

Artist Medium Receiver (art)
  • The communication model above demonstrates the
    relationship between an artist and the receiver
    of the art.
  • When an artist sets out to create art, she/he
    determines three main things
  • Purpose What am I trying to accomplish?
  • Audience For whom am I creating this art?
  • Medium What art form am I going to use?

  • In terms of a short story, the model looks more
    precisely like this
  • Author Short Story Reader
  • Short stories are not the spontaneous product of
    the natural world the author deliberately brings
    his/her writing talent to bear, in order to bring
    something to the reader (the purpose).

PURPOSE Why Short Stories?
  • There are principally THREE reasons for
    reading/writing short stories
  • To entertain
  • The first purpose of a short story is to enjoy
    it. Authors want you to enjoy a short story (and
    usually to pay money for it).

Why Short Stories?
  • 1. To entertain
  • 2. To teach
  • Often, the author has a particular point of view
    on an issue that he/she wants to share. The
    story is the medium the author uses to convey the
  • This is the stage of analysis at which
    understanding symbol, meaning, and other literary
    devices is important.

Why Short Stories?
  • 1. To entertain
  • 2. To teach
  • 3. To raise questions
  • Often, a specific message from the author is
    not clear other times, there is no message
    from the author per se.
  • Rather, the author might be simply trying to get
    the reader to think about things in a new way, or
    to question things that the reader might have
    already made up his/her mind about.

Why Short Stories?
  • 1. To entertain.
  • 2. To teach.
  • 3. To raise questions.
  • It is important to remember that each short
    story can have two or all three purposes at the
    same time.

The Conversation of Birds
  • Crossroads 10 pp. 41-45.
  • Complete Responding to the Story b., c., d.,
    and e. Also, write down the definition of simile
    on p. 46, and find 3 examples of similes in the

History of the Short Story Author Research
  • You will be given an authors name. Go to the
  • Find out information about the author using
    books in the library. Write notes (Cornell
  • Come to class tomorrow with your notes. Be
    prepared to present your author to the class.

How to Analyze a Short Story
How to Analyze a Short Story
  • In the study of English as a discipline, you
    must approach texts in a variety of ways.
  • The only way to truly analyze a work of fiction
    is to return to it more than once, with different
    purposes in mind.
  • In a tightly-constructed short story, every
    element and often every word is chosen
  • When you analyze a short story, it is to see the
    authors design. When you can see the authors
    work, it raises the level of enjoyment (from an
    initial knee-jerk reaction to an intellectual

How to Analyze a Short Story
  • First Reading
  • Second Reading
  • Subsequent Readings
  • Read primarily to enjoy.
  • Take notes on anything that seems unusual,
    particularly vivid, jarring, or difficult to
  • Bring your analytical skills to bear. Look for
    literary devices, and think about how they
    operate in the story.

How to Analyze a Short Story
  • Take notes when you read a short story.
  • Remember

A Conversation of Birds
  • Read the short story, A Conversation of Birds.
  • With a partner, discuss what the aim(s) of the
    author might have been for writing the story.
    What is the theme or message?
  • Write a persuasive paragraph arguing your

Elements of a Short Story
  • Plot, Character, Setting, Atmosphere, and Style

The Five Elements of a Short Story
  • Plot
  • Character
  • Setting
  • Atmosphere
  • Style

  • Plot the arrangement of incidents or events in
    a story what happens in the story.
  • Plot line a way of visually demonstrating a
    storys structure by plotting incidents along a
    line plot lines can vary for different forms of

Plot of a Short Story
Plot of a Short Story
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 3
  • crises
  • 2
  • 1

Plot of a Short Story
  • Exposition (or Opening Situation) The reader is
    informed of the setting and is introduced to the
    main characters.
  • Inciting Force (or Complication) A conflict is
    usually established between characters. This
    conflict gets things started.
  • Rising Action The conflict between characters
    develops and becomes more pronounced. Involves a
    series of crises (conflicts).

Plot of a Short Story
  • 4. Climax The moment of greatest suspense a
    point of conflict that will lead to the
    resolution of the main plot.
  • 5. Falling Action The result of the outcome of
    the climactic conflict. Can involve a crisis,
    but in a short story is usually very short.
  • 6. Denouement (or Resolution, or Final Outcome)
    The writer attempts to have the reader leave the
    story satisfied.

The Three Little Pigs
Plot The Three Little Pigs
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1

Assignment Analyze The Three Little Pigs
  • In your notebook, draw a plot line.
  • Label the plotline with numbers and dots for the
  • Then, using the numbers as a key or guide,
    explain the plot of The Three Little Pigs.
  • Also, jot down (in a couple of sentences) what
    you think is the authors intention behind the
    story. How do you know?
  • You may work with a partner on this.

Plot of The Three Little Pigs
  • Exposition (or Opening Situation) The three
    pigs are introduced. Setting is minimal Once
    upon a time, with talking/personified pigs. It
    is time for the pigs to go out into the world
    and seek their fortunes, so they leave home.
  • Inciting Force (or Complication) The big bad
    wolf discovers the first pig in his house of
    straw, and wants to eat him.
  • Rising Action The wolf visits the house of
    straw and the house of sticks, blows them down
    and eats the piggies (these are the crises).

Plot of The Three Little Pigs
  • 4. Climax Failing to blow down the brick house,
    the wolf tries a different tactic to get into the
    house. The wolf climbs down the chimney and
  • 5. Falling Action The surviving pig invites his
    mother over, and she reinforces the lesson the
    pig (and reader) learned.
  • 6. Denouement (or Resolution, or Final Outcome)
    The pig learns his lesson and lives happily ever

The Michelle I Know
  • Crossroads 10 pp. 16-23.
  • Complete Responding to the Story and Story
    Craft Plot chart p. 23.

Paragraph Example The Plot of The Michelle I
  • The Michelle I Know is a short story about a
    girl diagnosed with leukemia who is very unhappy.
    The reader learns in the exposition that
    Michelle is confined to a hospital ward, and that
    she has few visitors except Rob, a boy she likes.
    Through the rising action, Brenda, Michelles
    kind nurse, tries to cheer Michelle up. She
    takes Michelle to meet a man who still has a
    positive outlook, despite also suffering from
    cancer for the past 8 years. The climax occurs
    when Rob finally shows up, and Michelle realizes
    that he likes her for who she is. There is no
    falling action or denouement, other than a kiss
    they almost share. Michelle is changed by the
    end of the story because she is finally happy.

Plot and Conflict
Plot and Conflict
  • Our lives are full of conflict. Likewise, the
    lives of characters are full of conflict.
  • Think of a story as really a look at a conflict
    and its resolution (for better or worse!).
  • There is no story without conflict.

Plot and Conflict
  • Really, the plot of a story is literally ALL
    about conflict.
  • The inciting force and the crises (in the rising
    action phase), as well as the climax are all
    conflicts of some sort.
  • (Note There can be minor conflicts in the
    falling action, but in a short story these are

Two Main Types of Conflict
  • There are two main types of conflict
  • Psychological Conflict
  • Physical Conflict

Categories of Conflict
  • Conflict can be categorized as
  • Internal
  • Person vs. Herself/Himself
  • OR
  • External
  • Person vs. Person
  • Person vs. Nature
  • Person vs. Society
  • Person vs. the Unknown
  • Person vs. the Supernatural
  • Person vs. Time

Brainstorm Conflicts
  • Create a character in your mind. Choose his/her
    name, gender, age, and list a couple of details
    about him/her.
  • Example Henry 23-year-old male construction
    worker. Loves to travel, has a dog named
    Rover, oldest of three brothers.
  • Look at the kinds of conflict.
  • For each type of conflict, create THREE examples
    of that kind of conflict that your character
    might be involved in.
  • e.g. Person vs. Nature on the construction
    site, Henry uncovers a prehistoric creature
    that tries to kill them all
  • -- Rover is bitten by a rabid mouse and hunts
  • Person vs. Time Rover is bitten by a rattler,
    and Henry must get him to a vet in time to
    save his life.
  • Person vs. the Unknown Called to a building
    project in Brazil, Henrys co-workers start
    disappearing into the night and no one knows

The Michelle I Know
  • Outline a Short Story

  • Divide your page into three equal parts.
  • Beginning
  • Middle
  • End

  • Brainstorm for each part (15-20 mins). In each
    space, cover the following questions
  • Who is involved?
  • What is happening?
  • When is it taking place?
  • Where is it taking place?
  • Why is it taking place?
  • How is it happening? any other details that pop
    into your head.

The Michelle I Know Outline a Short Story
  • Write an outline for your short story. Write a
    brief paragraph (3-4 sentences, unstructured) on
    each of the following elements
  • Main Character(s) and Personality
  • Setting
  • Main Problem (to be solved in the climax)
  • Rising Action Crises/Conflicts (at least 3)
  • Climax
  • Changes Outline what has changed from the
  • Conclusion
  • You will have 20-25 minutes for this exercise.

  • Write a first draft of your story, following your
    outline. Do the best you can, but do not
    obsess over every detail.
  • Aim for 350-500 words.
  • Your final version of this story will be between
    500 and 1000 words.

  • Remember
  • Koch Snowflake

Revising Adding Details
  • A simple way to revise a story is to analyze the
    authors use of details so far, and make
    suggestions for improvement.
  • The way to do this is through improving word
    choice, and adding sensual details through
    adjectives and adverbs.

Revising Adding Details
  • Swap stories with a classmate. Let him/her read
    your story draft, and each of you must comment
  • What works really well in the story so far.
  • What works in the story, but needs some
  • What doesnt work so well, and needs some
  • Wherever you see a NOUN, circle it.
  • Wherever you see a VERB, circle it.
  • Get back your story. For every NOUN circled,
    write at least ONE adjective that could go with
    that noun. For every VERB circled, write at
    least one ADVERB that could make the image
  • Write a second draft of the story, making changes
    that reflect your peers suggestions. Use MLA
  • Remember The idea of getting peer help is to
    IMPROVE your writing, not simply to criticize it!

Revising Adding Dialogue
  • Remember Short story writing is an ART. That
    means, every part of the short story should play
    a part towards the whole!
  • When writing dialogue, remember that every time
    a character speaks, there should be a REASON for
    that speaking.
  • Dialogue should
  • Give the reader previously unknown information.
  • Make the speaker and situation more realistic for
    the reader.
  • Characterize the speaker and the character(s)
    spoken to.
  • Actually, the authors use of dialogue WILL do
    these things! So, the authors job is to make
    them work within the story he/she has written.

Revising Adding Dialogue
  • Swap stories with a classmate. Let him/her read
    your story draft, and
  • Where dialogue is present, constructively
    criticize the diction used, and make suggestions
  • Indicate points where you think dialogue would
    make the story better, and make suggestions
  • When you are finished, discuss these things with
    your partner. Remember The goal is to make the
    writing BETTER!

  • Swap your second draft with a classmate.
  • Peer edit each others work. Pay attention to
    little details like paragraphing, punctuation
    (especially in dialogue!), and grammar.
  • When finished, produce a final draft for

  • Your final version of this story is due
    Wednesday, Nov. 12, in MLA format.

Genre Science Fiction
  • Science fiction is a broad genre of fiction that
    often involves one or more of the following
  • A setting in the future or in an alternate
  • A setting in outer space or involving aliens or
    unknown civilizations.
  • The discovery or application of new scientific
    principles or new technology, such as time travel
    or robots.
  • Science fiction differs from fantasy in that its
    imaginary elements are usually possible within
    established laws of nature (although some
    elements might be entirely imaginative).

Ray Bradbury
  • Ray Douglas Bradbury is an American fantasy,
    horror, science fiction, and mystery writer best
    known for The Martian Chronicles, a 1950 book
    which has been described both as a short story
    collection and a novel, and his 1953 dystopian
    novel Fahrenheit 451.

A Sound of Thunder
  • Answer all questions in complete sentences.

  • 1. How is the readers interest caught?
  • 2. How does the exposition part of the story set
    up what is to follow? (setting, main
  • 3. What relationship does the material presented
    in the introduction bear to the conclusion of the
  • 4. Describe as many conflicts as you can in the
    story. For each, label it as a person vs.
    _____ conflict, and describe who/what is
    involved in it. Indicate the page(s) on which
    the conflict takes place. Try to identify what
    you think is the MAIN CONFLICT.
  • 5. What is the climax of the story? Why do you
    think that part is the climax?

  • 6. Bradburys stories are often thought to
    contain outright lessons for the reader. That
    is, one of the goals of this story is to teach,
    and Bradbury has a certain point of view of which
    he wants to convince his reader.
  • What do you think is the main lesson of the
    story? In a persuasive paragraph, argue what you
    think is the message (or messages) being
    delivered through the story. Use evidence from
    the story to prove what you say.

  • Two of the goals of this story are to teach and
    to raise questions about larger issues in the
    real world.
  • For each of the following ideas, brainstorm what
    Bradbury might be trying to get the reader to
    think about. You have to think on two levels
    what does the story indicate about the issue, and
    how might that message be relevant to the real
    world generally
  • Mans relationship with the natural world
  • Scientific progress and its dangers in general
    (time travel, technology, etc.)
  • Human nature/psychology
  • Politics

  • For this section, the slides you are to copy
    appear in BLACK.

The Essay The Basics
  • To understand the structure of any essay,
    remember this structure
  • Say what you are going to say.
  • Say it.
  • Say what you said.

The Essay The Basics
  • To understand the structure of any essay,
    remember this structure
  • Say what you are going to say.
  • (Introduction)
  • Say it.
  • (Body Paragraphs)
  • Say what you said.
  • (Conclusion)

The Essay The Basics - Paragraphs
  • There are many ways to write paragraphs. For a
    general rule, follow this formula
  • Topic Sentence
  • Say what you are going to say.
  • Body sentences
  • Say it (or prove it).
  • Final sentence
  • Say what you said AND/OR transition to the next

Expository Essay
  • You either offer information or explain your
    point of view on a topic you already know
    something about.
  • The five-paragraph essay taught in high school
    English classes is of this type.
  • There are two basic types of expository essay
  • 1. one gives information, and
  • 2. the other defends an opinion.

Expository Essay
  • Basic structure
  • Paragraph One - Introduction
  • Announces the topic and builds to a thesis
    statement in which you state your point of view.
  • Paragraphs Two to Four (or more) Body
  • Supporting evidence and reasoned discussion.
  • Final Paragraph Conclusion
  • Restates the thesis more emphatically, and
    suggests wider implications. Do NOT simply

The 5-Paragraph Essay
  • Introduction
  • Body 1
  • Body 2
  • Body 3
  • Conclusion

Structure of the Introduction
  • General Statement Talk about the broader topic
    in general.
  • Linking Statement Name the text and author.
  • Thesis Statement

Body Paragraphs
  • Make three statements that support your thesis,
    and provide evidence or proof that supports those
  • These will be three paragraphs of roughly-equal
    length. They should follow strict paragraph
    structure, and the evidence you use to back up
    your topic sentences should be drawn directly
    from the text whenever possible.

Structure of the Conclusion
  • Re-state Thesis
  • Linking Statement Name the text and author.
  • General Statement Talk about the broader topic
    in general, AND/OR leave the reader with
    something related to think about.

Notes and Tips
  • In general, except for in Personal Experience
    essays, avoid the first-person pronoun, I, in
    your essays.
  • Any sentence can be re-written to remove the
    self-conscious I, me, mine.
  • It is not necessary to write, In my opinion, I
    believe, I feel, etc.
  • NEVER write things like, In the following essay,
    I shall try to prove, or In conclusion

Thesis Statements
What is a Thesis?
  • Your thesis is the main point or central idea of
    your paper. It is the backbone of the paper.
  • If you ask the question,
  • What is the main point of this paper?
  • your answer should resemble your essays thesis

What is a THESIS?!?
  • The core of an informational writing piece
  • The central message of the essay the meaning in
    a nutshell
  • A clear, concise statement of what an author is
    going to say.
  • An argument with which others may agree or

A strong thesis
  • gives both the reader and writer a sense of
  • gets readers involved in the conversation of
    the essay it alerts the reader to look for
    details, facts, and quotations that support the
    statement the thesis makes.

Where is your thesis statement?
  • At the beginning of the essay, in order to
  • establish your position, and
  • give your reader a sense of direction.
  • Usually the last line of paragraph 1.
  • In longer essays, may appear in paragraph 2.

Comparison Essay A Sound of Thunder and A
Sound of Thunder
  • Watch the film A Sound of Thunder.
  • Take notes on the plot, especially how it varies
    from the short story A Sound of Thunder.
  • You might want to set your page up in two
    columns to make comparison notes
  • Movie Short Story

  • Clearly, the film was inspired by the movie.
    But, the film is very different from the short
  • What messages does the film version carry? How
    does it handle the issues raised by Bradbury?
  • In a formal essay, compare Bradburys A Sound
    of Thunder to the film A Sound of Thunder.
  • You will want to mention the following
  • Consider the purposes of short stories To
    entertain, to teach, and to raise questions.
  • Explain how the story and the film work to
    accomplish the three purposes of short stories.
  • Look at how the film treats the SAME
    topics/issues. Compare (consider things that are
    the SAME) and contrast (consider things that are
    DIFFERENT) the two versions and their messages.

Five-paragraph Comparison Essay Structure A
Sound of Thunder
  • Structure
  • Introduction In your thesis, clearly state for
    the reader what you are going to prove to them.
  • Paragraph 2 Compare/contrast the treatment of
    issue 1.
  • Paragraph 3 Compare/contrast the treatment of
    issue 2.
  • Paragraph 4 Compare/contrast the treatment of
    issue 3.
  • Conclusion Re-state your thesis.
  • Follow this formula!

The Essay The Basics - Paragraphs
  • There are many ways to write paragraphs. For a
    general rule, follow this formula
  • Topic Sentence
  • Say what you are going to say.
  • Body sentences
  • Say it (or prove it).
  • Final sentence
  • Say what you said AND/OR transition to the next

Sample Paragraphs
How the Writing Process Works
  • The writing process is the method by which you
    will develop your writing from idea to published
    form. It includes five important steps
    pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, and
    publishing. Pre-writing involves brainstorming
    and organizing your ideas. Drafting is when you
    write your first, rough copy. Revision involves
    adding or removing parts with your audience in
    mind. Fixing spelling, punctuation, and grammar
    mistakes is editing. Finally, publishing
    involves giving your work to the intended
    audience. Using the steps of the writing process
    will improve your writing by taking it from an
    idea to publication.

The Aims of a Short Story
  • When an author writes a short story, he/she has
    three aims in mind To entertain, to teach, and
    to raise questions. The author wants the reader
    to enjoy the story, and the main aim of short
    stories is to entertain. To teach means the
    author has a certain message for the reader to
    understand, and the story is the medium for that
    message. Sometimes, the author does not have a
    specific message, but simply wants to raise
    questions in the readers mind about things that
    the reader already believes, and so get the
    reader to think about things in a new way. Short
    story authors might focus on one aim in
    particular, but all three aims are often in mind.

  • Characterization

  • Characters are the people of the story.
  • Characterization is of two main types
  • Direct characterization occurs when the author
    (through narration) explicitly tells the reader
    what a particular character is like.
  • Indirect characterization is more subtle. The
    author gives certain information and lets the
    reader draw his/her own conclusions regarding the

  • Indirect characterization is achieved using the
    following methods
  • The characters name. (E.g. Old Man Warner in
    The Lottery warns people.)
  • The characters appearance.
  • What the character says (or thinks).
  • What the character does.
  • What others say or think about the character,
    including other characters or the narrator.

  • To analyze a character, look at the characters
    dialogue, appearance, actions, environment,
    character type, and motivation.
  • Also note if there are ironies or discrepancies,
    i.e. does the character say he believes one
    thing, but act the opposite way? Do other
    characters say things about him that you do not
    see as true?

Two Kinds
  • Crossroads 10 pp. 198-209.
  • Complete Responding to the Story p. 210.

Two Kinds Character Development
  • Character development occurs when a character
    changes throughout the course of a story.
  • 1. What was your initial reaction to the mother?
    How did you feel about her by the end of the
  • 2. What was your initial reaction to the
    daughter? How did you feel about her by the end
    of the story?
  • When you write your own stories, keep this in

Two Kinds Vocabulary
  • conjunction a part of speech used to
    connect and relate words or sentences.
    Common conjunctions are and, but, for, or, so,
    and yet.
  • Normally, conjunctions should NOT be used to
    start sentences. In Two Kinds, Amy Tan uses
    conjunctions to begin many sentences. What is
    the effect of this?

Two Kinds Assignment-- Thinking Outside the
  • What pressures are there on people to be
  • What is success?
  • What images does society use to stand for
  • Do you think that success is important? Why?
  • Should everyone want to be successful? Why or
    why not?
  • Can everyone be successful?
  • What is character? How does character relate
    to behaviour?

Two Kinds Letter of Apology
  • Have you ever felt badly about something you
    once did, but you never apologized for doing it?
    Well, heres your chance!
  • Write a letter to that person explaining what
    you did and why you have to apologize.
  • Will you send your letter? You decide!

  • Dear Mr. Crowell,
  • I hope everything is well with you. It has
    been a long time since we last spoke, so youre
    probably wondering why I am writing now. I feel
    a need to apologize for something I did when I
    was in your grade 7 science class.
  • In the spring of that year, we had to do a big
    poster project about something scientific that we
    researched ourselves. When the time came to hand
    them in, I had not finished the assignment. I
    then promptly forgot all about it.
  • A few weeks later, you returned the projects to
    the class. Knowing that my mark would suffer
    because I did not hand it in, I asked you where
    my project was, and pretended that I was angry
    because I had handed it in and you lost it. I
    was not a good liar, so I did not keep up the
    charade for long, and you were well-organized and
    knew the truth.
  • I want to apologize for that lie now. I know
    that my accusation made you look like either an
    incompetent teacher or a liar in front of our
    class. It was unfair of me to basically accuse
    you of failing to do your job. For the lie, I
    truly apologize.
  • Sincerely,
  • Toby K. Stoddart

Two Kinds Descriptive Paragraph
  • Everyone wants to be successful, but people
    have different ideas about what success is.
  • How will you know when you have achieved
    success? What would success look like in your
    own life?
  • Write a descriptive paragraph in which you
    describe yourself in 10, 15, 20, or 25 years
    when you are successful, according to your own
    definition of success.

  • Character Sketch

What is a Character Sketch?
  • A character sketch is a write-up about a
    specific character, giving the characters main
    personality traits and physical attributes. It
    should include the following
  • Identifying the Character (1 paragraph)
  • Physical Description (1 paragraph)
  • Personality Characteristics (1-2 paragraphs)
  • Importance of the Character to the Story (1

1. Identify the Character
  • This paragraph could be the introduction.
  • Tell who the character is by naming the character
    and what role he/she plays in the story.
  • Give the title of the novel/story/play.
  • Tell whether he/she is a major, secondary, or
    minor character.

2. Physical Description
  • Tell what the character looks like. Use evidence
    from the novel be specific!
  • Look for the best quotes you can note
    characterization methods!

3. Personality and Characteristics
  • Explain what the character is like.
  • This could include
  • His/her likes and dislikes
  • His/her good and bad qualities
  • His/her strong and weak points
  • His/her attitude and opinions
  • Basically, any personality characteristic that is
    shown through characterization.

3. Personality and Characteristics cont.
  • IMPORTANT Whatever statements you make about a
    character, they MUST be backed up (proven) by
    evidence from the story!
  • Give examples, quotations, and references from
    the story to prove what you say.

4. Importance of the Character to the Story
  • Explain the importance of this character and
    his/her role in the story.
  • (You may also consider how he/she added to the
    story and speculate on how the story might have
    been different had he/she been different or acted

Personality Words Exercise
  • Each class member will be assigned a letter.
  • Working with a partner, take a few moments and
    brainstorm words that describe peoples
    personalities that begin with your letters.
  • You should have at least 5 words for each
    letter. You will share them with the class.

Personality Words
  • Aggressive
  • Ambitious
  • Anxious
  • Bitter
  • Boastful
  • Cautious
  • Clumsy
  • Concerned
  • Confident
  • Considerate
  • Courageous
  • Courteous
  • Cowardly
  • Cruel
  • Curious
  • Dependable
  • Disorganized
  • Easy-going
  • Eccentric
  • Excitable
  • Faithful
  • Friendly
  • Generous
  • Gentle
  • Gloomy
  • Greedy

Personality Words
  • Grouchy
  • Gullible
  • Helpful
  • Honest
  • Humble
  • Hypocritical
  • Ignorant
  • Ill-tempered
  • Imaginative
  • Impatient
  • Independent
  • Ingenious
  • Insecure
  • Insistent
  • Intelligent
  • Inventive
  • Irrepressible
  • Jealous
  • Lazy
  • Lonely
  • Loving
  • Loyal
  • Miserly
  • Moody
  • Nervous
  • Obnoxious
  • Optimistic
  • Outgoing
  • Outrageous
  • Pessimistic
  • Polite
  • Proud

Personality Words
  • Relaxed
  • Reliable
  • Romantic
  • Rude
  • Sarcastic
  • Scatterbrained
  • Secretive
  • Sensitive
  • Shy
  • Sly
  • Sneaky
  • Sophisticated
  • Spontaneous
  • Stubborn
  • Superficial
  • Suspicious
  • Tactful
  • Timid
  • Tiresome
  • Treacherous
  • Uninhibited
  • Unintelligent
  • Unpredictable
  • Unreliable
  • Vague
  • Vain
  • Virtuous
  • Vital
  • Vulnerable
  • Witty

Write a Character Sketch Pre-writing
  • Choose a character from a story you know well or
    a television show that you know very well.
  • Brainstorm everything you know about that
  • Take a few minutes to do this.

Write a Character Sketch Drafting
  • Write a character sketch of the character you
  • Note If you chose a television or film
    character, you must know the show or film well
    enough to be able to provide concrete examples
    that prove what you say!

What is a Character Trait Essay?
  • Character sketches can take many forms. The
    most common is the Character Trait Essay.
  • Character Trait Essays can be longer than 5
    paragraphs, but are structured the same way
    Introduction, main body, and conclusion. They
    try to prove THREE or more main characteristics
    about a character.

  • Types of Characters

Types of Characters
  • Characters can be described in several ways. Two
    main ones are
  • Flat or Round
  • Major or Minor

Flat v. Round Characters
  • Round (or dynamic) characters change and grow
    throughout the course of a story. The change
    might be emotional, spiritual, or intellectual.
    Through encountering the conflicts and crises in
    the story, they illuminate the message(s) the
    author is sending.
  • Flat (or static) characters do not change and
    grow throughout the story.

Major v. Minor Characters
  • Major characters are important to the story.
    They tend also to be round.
  • Protagonist The central character of a literary
  • Antagonist The rival or opponent against whom
    the main character (protagonist) is contending.

Major v. Minor Characters
  • Minor characters tend to be flat, but are also
    important to a story in that they serve
    particular purposes, which may include
  • Giving the author a way to provide background
  • Act as a foil (a contrast character) or alter ego
    (a comparison character) to a major character
  • Foreshadow events
  • Advance the plot
  • Illuminate theme
  • Enhance the setting
  • Establish mood

  • Sometimes, characters are stereotypes
    characters that reflect expectations of behaviour
    from particular groups, rather than a fleshed-out
  • Stereotypes can serve a purpose in a story as a
    minor character, but as major characters they are
    usually simply a sign of weak writing.

Ive Got Gloria
  • Crossroads 10 pp. 170-176.

Ive Got Gloria Character Development
  • Character development is a change in how a
    character in a story thinks or deals with life
    situations. It is an awareness that a character
    develops to become who he or she is.
  • 1. What is Scott like at the beginning of the
    story? What did you think of him at the
    beginning of the story? How has he changed at
    the end? Did your impression of him change?
  • 2. Choose a story you have read recently (or a
    film you have seen) in which you think a
    character changes or develops. Outline the
    events that led to this development. (Follow a
    plot diagram!)

  • Setting the physical backdrop of the story
  • where (place) and when (time) the story takes
  • When looking at setting, you must try to be as
    specific as possible, but describe where the
    entire story takes place. For example, A
    modern-day city, Jerusalem in the Middle Ages,
    and Anchorage, Alaska c. 1950s are settings
    night-time on a street, then in a car, then a
    store is not.
  • Generally, the author will leave it to the
    reader to infer the setting of the story, to some
    extent. Use clues from the beginning of the
    story to figure out the setting.

Setting Exercise
  • Return to the short stories we have read so far
  • Your childrens book.
  • The Three Little Pigs
  • On A Sidewalk Bleeding
  • The Michelle I Know
  • A Conversation of Birds
  • A Sound of Thunder
  • Ive Got Gloria
  • It Could Happen to You (test story)
  • For each story, describe the setting as
    completely as you can in as few words as you can.
  • Return to the first few paragraphs of the story
    if you do not remember.

  • Atmosphere the overall mood or tone of the
    story. Atmosphere is usually established at
    the beginning of a story.
  • Any number of things can contribute to the
    atmosphere, including (but not limited to)
  • Characters
  • Clothing
  • Furniture
  • Natural surroundings
  • Light/darkness
  • Weather
  • Atmosphere has a close connection with setting,
    because the setting often determines the
    atmosphere of the story.

The Cask of Amontillado
  • As we read, note how the author uses the setting
    to establish mood and reveal character.

  • A. Introduction
  • Why is the introduction successful in capturing
    the readers interest and in creating suspense?
  • What purposes in the development of the story are
    served by the introduction?

  • B. Setting
  • In what ways does the setting contribute to the
    creation of mood or atmosphere?
  • How does the author use setting to reveal

  • C. Plot
  • 1. Define the central conflict(s) in the story.
  • 2. Where is the climax of the story? Explain why
    you think so.
  • 3. What is the denouement? Do you think it is a
    satisfying ending? Why or why not?

  • D. Dialogue
  • To what extent does the author use dialogue to
    advance the plot? Give an example.
  • To what extent does the author use dialogue to
    reveal character? Give an example.

  • Formal
  • Discourse

  • Style the ways an author expresses himself/
    herself and conveys his/her ideas and
    central purpose.
  • Style is very personal, like a signature no
    two writing styles are identical.
  • In order to examine a writers style, we must
    consider the following six areas diction,
    sentence structure, point of view, irony,
    symbolism, imagery.

  • Diction word choice.
  • Diction is what makes the short story an art
    form words are chosen specifically to achieve a
    particular purpose.

  • There are FOUR main types of diction
  • Formal diction
  • Informal diction
  • Colloquial diction
  • Slang

  • Formal diction is usually found in academic
    texts, academic papers, and formal discourse.
  • Informal diction is relaxed conversation, and
    is found in writing that has a lighter tone and
    is sometimes humorous.

  • insert reading samples of formal diction

  • insert reading samples of informal diction

  • Colloquial diction is the everyday language use
    of a particular group of people.
  • For example, we go to the store to buy a loaf
    of bread, but in Cape Breton they buy a bun of
  • Colloquial diction varies by geographic area and
    cultural region. For example, think about how
    different English is here than in Newfoundland
    (where colloquialisms abound).

Style Colloquial Diction
  • Can you think of anything that HHS students say
    that might not be understood by people from other
  • What is jonesin? (Mr. Stoddart is
  • Can you think of other colloquialisms? (This
    might be difficult sometimes it takes someone
    from another place to point them out!)

  • Slang is defined as a newly-coined word not
    accepted for formal usage yet, and is usually not
    found in the dictionary.
  • Aint and Doh are slang, but have made
    their way into the Oxford English Dictionary.

Style Sentence Structure
  • Sentence structure is indicated by whether or
    not the sentences are long, short, simple,
    compound, complex, etc.
  • Some authors styles are recognizable by their
    sentence structure alone.

  • See Crossroads 10 Teacher Manual pp. 460-463.

The Michelle I Know Sentence Variety
  • Re-read the first few pages of The Michelle I
    Know (Crossroads 10 pp. 16-23), noticing how the
    author uses sentences of varying lengths and
    types. Why would an author do this? What effect
    is created?
  • Check one or two of the pieces that youve
    written this year. Do you think youve used a
    variety of sentences?
  • In one of your own works, find an example of each
    of the following
  • A statement
  • A question
  • An exclamation
  • A very short sentence
  • A very long sentence
  • If you do not have all of these types of
    sentences, edit some of the sentences until you
    do, then write down those examples.

Style Point of View
  • Point of view the vantage point from which the
    author presents the action of the story. The
    point of view is presented by the narrator.
  • Every work of fiction has a narrator the person
    telling the story is the narrator, NOT the
  • In some stories, there is little separation
    between the narrator and the author, but in
    others the narrator brings his/her own biases to
    the telling of the story.

Style Point of View
  • There are two ways to describe point of view
  • Third person perspective
  • vs.
  • First person perspective
  • AND
  • Limited narration
  • vs.
  • Omniscient narration

Style Point of View
  • Third person narration
  • The person telling
  • the story is NOT part
  • of the action.
  • The reader/viewer sees the action as if from an
    external camera.

They saw the enemy ahead. Creeping up quietly,
John raised his rifle
Style Point of View
  • First person narration This is a major, minor,
    or silent character who tells the story.
  • (Silent means they play no role in the action
    of the story, but are present in it.)

I saw them there, crouched behind the boxes, and
shouted to my team to fire at will!
Point of View Language
  • You can identify a first- or third-person
    perspective based upon the pronouns used by the
  • First person narration I or we are used.
  • Third person narration He, she, or they are

Subject and Object Pronouns
  • Basic Sentence Structure
  • Mary and I went to the park.
  • subject verb object
  • Pronouns are words that take the place of nouns
    in a sentence.
  • There are two types of pronouns Subject
    pronouns and object pronouns.
  • Basically, subject pronouns are the do-ers of
    the action in the sentence, and come before the
  • Object pronouns have the verb acted upon them.

Subject pronouns can only go in the subject
position in a sentence object pronouns can only
go in the object position!
  • Subject Pronouns
  • I
  • You (s.)
  • He/She/It
  • We
  • You (pl.)
  • They
  • Object Pronouns
  • Me
  • You (s.)
  • Him/Her/It
  • Us
  • You (pl.)
  • Them
  • ( others, e.g. himself, herself, etc.)

French-language students usually understand this
best by recognizing the parallels in French.
  • Subject Pronouns
  • Je
  • Tu
  • Il/Elle
  • Nous
  • Vous
  • Ils/Elles
  • Object Pronouns
  • Moi
  • Toi
  • Il/Elle
  • Nous
  • Vous
  • Lui

  • You probably would not say
  • Me went to the park.
  • Little children talk this way, because they have
    not absorbed language rules yet. When used in
    public speaking (for example), it is a mark of a
    lack of education.
  • You would not do this because me is an object
    pronoun not to be used in the subject position!
  • Likewise, then, you should not use the following
  • Mary and me are going out tonight.
  • Me and him are gonna get together after school.

Point of View Verbs and Tenses
  • insert lesson on verbs

  • Read the three short short stories on shoplifting.

Point of View Short Story Exercise
  • Choose one of the short stories on shoplifting.
  • Choose a character or object from the story.
    For example, you might choose one of the thieves,
    a store clerk, or an object that was stolen (e.g.
    toothpaste tube).
  • Choose a tense for the story. You can write it
    as a past-tense story about what happened, or as
    a present tense in the moment story.
  • Without changing any of the facts of the story,
    and following the same plot as much as possible,
    re-tell the story from the first-person point of
    view of the character/object you chose.
  • Your draft should be 300-500 words in length (or

Style Point of View
  • Limited narration The narrators knowledge is
    limited to the direct knowledge of the
  • This is the point of view that is most like
    real life, and provides an immediacy to the
  • For example, you do not know exactly what is
    happening behind each of the walls of the
    classroom you are in. Likewise, a limited
    narrator would only know what he/she could

Style Point of View
  • Omniscient narration The narrator knows
    everything about the characters and events, and
    can enter the mind of any character at will.
  • Omniscient narration is useful for stories with
    several characters of equal importance, or for
    letting the viewer see the antagonists point of
    view as well as the protagonists.
  • Omniscient narration sacrifices immediacy of
  • The omniscient narrator is often confused with
    the author.

Style Point of View
  • When you describe the narration in a story, you
    must describe the various aspects of the point of
  • There are FOUR basic points of view
  • First person omniscient
  • First person limited
  • Third person omniscient
  • Third person limited

Style Point of View
  • First Person
  • Limited Omniscient
  • Third Person

Point of View Some Examples
  • The Three Little Pigs is written from the third
    person omniscient perspective. We can see what
    each of the pigs is doing inside the houses, and
    what the wolf does outside as well.
  • The Outsiders is written from the first person
    limited perspective. We only see what Ponyboy
    sees, and events are interpreted for us by
    Ponyboy. (Cue for Treason is the same, with
    Peter being the narrator.)
  • The Harry Potter series is written mostly in
    the third person limited perspective. The only
    action that we see happen is when Harry is
    present the rest is reported to the reader by
    other characters. (Most suspense novels are
    written from this point of view, to maintain
    suspense by keeping the reader guessing.)
    Occasionally, the author allows us to see the
    teachers talking, and on one or two occasions
    lets us see the villains scheming (switching
    narrative perspectives).

Point of View Exercise
  • Complete the following exercise in your
  • Choose two novels you have read in the recent
    past, or are reading now. Include your
    independent reading selection for class!
  • For each, identify the narrative point of view
    and the verb tense employed. Why do you think
    the author deliberately chose these elements?

The Crystal Stars Have Just Begun to Shine
  • Crossroads 10 pp. 60-66.
  • Prewriting
  • Choose an event that happened to you recently,
    and brainstorm on the event. Write down as much
    as you can, and include details (who, what, when,
    where, why, sights, sounds, smells, tastes,
    feelings, etc.)

The Crystal Stars Have Just Begun to Shine
  • Crossroads 10 pp. 60-66.
  • Read 3. Writing and complete the writing
    exercise Choose an event that happened to you
    recently, and describe that event in the first
    person, then again in the third person. (About 1
    page each.)

Style - Foreshadowing
  • Foreshadowing a literary device in which an