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Plot of a Short Story

Students can use this guide to look at each part of short story in detail. To be used with corresponding worksheets.
by

Tarree Edwards

on 26 November 2012

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Transcript of Plot of a Short Story

Follow this recipe for a great
short story! Plot of a Short Story Complication Resolution Orientation A formula that will help you create suspense. You might find that you have already written your conclusion at the end of you main event. This only has to be one or two sentences long. Grab the readers attention! Entertaining Beginning The bear lept from the water and slammed its claws into the salmon. I could see it all with my new binoculars, but I wanted a better look. Action! Dialogue! “We’ve got to get out of here!” screamed Bart and Lisa. They knew that sneaking into the old basement might get them into some trouble, but they had no idea it would be this scary. Sound! The beast’s terrifying roar shook the ground. I didn’t want to get any closer but I knew my brother wouldn’t feel the same way. Cliffhanger Question! The squirrel clung to his acorn for dear life as he sank deeper and deeper. Suddenly, he was surrounded by hungry piranas. As I watched the movie I wondered if there were any piranas in the river by our house. Action: I swung my backpack over my shoulder and headed into the woods. It would be a great day for a campout!

Dialogue: “This is the perfect spot to set up the tent!” I said.

Sound: HOOO! HOOO! An owl swooped down toward me, complaining that I’d set up my tent in his part of the forest.

Cliffhanger Question: As I headed out for a hike I hoped I wouldn’t run into any grizzly bears. For Example... On the day of the camping trip I woke up early. I had some toast and peanut butter and then I got ready to leave for the woods. Elaborate Details Setting Where and when the story takes place Character Who the story is about Object A thing that is very important to the story Elaborate details are in the orientation of the story that include very specific information about the story. these include: Work through the worksheet provided to practice your elaborate detail skills! Burning Questions Suspense hooks the reader and moves the story in the complication/conflict or main event. Suspense introduces or reveals the monster, the villain, the challenge, or the struggle.There are three techniques you can use to achieve this: Suspense Word References Magic of 3 Questions that need to be answered by the reader to find out what happens next... describing something without using its actual name. The main event is the description of the complication/conflict happening. The best advice is to stretch it out describing the event in great detail. Main Event Describe the action in great detail. This is what the reader has been waiting for. Don’t disappoint! Give us a play-by play, not a summary. Work through the worksheet provided to practice writing your main event! Work through the worksheet provided to practice your suspense writing skills! This is the part of the story where everything is wrapped up. It is the ending of the short story and occurs after the Main Event. Solution and Conclusion Here are some Examples:

The captain makes a break away and shoots at the net. The Oilers win the Stanley Cup! The quarterback hurls the ball into the end zone. Number 31 dives for the ball and makes an amazing catch. The Saskatchewan Roughriders win the Grey Cup! The knight closes his eyes and swings his sword with all his might. The Dragon’s reign of terror is finally over. Andrew closed his eyes and tried to remember how the word looked and there it was. He simply spelled the word from his memory. The crowd went wild as the Spelling Bee judges raised Andrew’s arm into the air. With sweat dripping in his eyes he punched as hard as he could. He was exhausted from fighting so hard and knew that one solid connection would end the fight and make Sonny James the new Heavy Weight Champ. Champ Reggie Simpson was at the same place: one last punch and hope for the best. Example: Both boxers swung at the same time. Sonny’s mouth guard flew from his mouth and everything went black. Now your ready to write your own short story! Create a memorable ending that reveals the purpose of the Main Event and shows how it made a positive change in the lives of the main characters.

When creating your Extended Ending, try to include as many of the following as possible: Extended Ending How does the main character feel about what happened?
Mary still couldn’t believe she had the courage to stand up to Samantha like that. She was proud of herself. What does the main character wish or hope for?
Jen hoped it would be the last time she saw Evan. What did the main character decide?
Paul decided that next time he would train harder. What did the main character remember most?
Tim took a moment to think about how close he came to losing his life. He’ll never forget the sound of the snarling wolves and the gunshot that saved his life. Something the main character does to prove s/he learned something valuable.
Terrance closed his book and checked the clock. He’d been reading for 4 hours. Tomorrow he’d answer Mr. H’s question. Feelings Memory Wish or Hope Decision Defining Action
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