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7 Literary Elements That Are Essential In Writing A Story

literary elements

When it comes to improving your writing style, it is important that you are familiar with the key literary elements. They are the components of a story, and if just one literary element is missing, then the story itself will be incomplete.

Think of these elements as the building blocks of a story, and you should be aware of them, if you want to write as effectively as possible. Here are seven literary elements that you should use in your writing.

1. Setting

The setting of a story is a very important writing element, because it is how you will be able to describe the place and time in which the story takes place. The setting is particularly important because it will help you describe key pieces of information that will affect the other literary elements in your story.

2. Mood

The mood of a story is the feeling or emotion that your readers will get from reading a literary work. This is very important because a writer that does not have the ability to convey mood, is a useless one. When you write the mood for your story, you should be as detailed as possible. The more descriptive words you use, the better your story will be.

3. Plot

When it comes to writing a story, one of the most important aspects is the plot. Remember that without a set plot, your story will have no shape or coherence. It will be just a set of events that happens at random. Your plot is the order in which the events in your story will take place. The most common plot arcs usually have six elements. Here is a quick take on the six elements.

· Exposition

This is the very first part of the story, and is usually used to explain key points of the story, and introduce characters.

· Conflict

The conflict is the challenge that the main characters will have to overcome. The conflict is an overarching element in the story that will move it forward.

· Rising Action

The rising action is the gradual buildup of the story to the climax of the story. This is the part of the story where the main character struggles with the minor conflicts within the story. The rising action should have a lot of tension, which will be addressed at the climax of the story.

· Climax

The climax is the highest point of the story, and is the part where the main characters will have to face the main conflict within the story. This is the part where all the tension gets it its highest point, and is usually considered the highlight of the story.

· Falling Action

The falling action of the story, is the part where the tension in the story disperses and all loose ends are addressed. This is not the conclusion of the story, but it is very near the end.

· Resolution

The resolution is the ending of the story, and all the conflicts within the story should be resolved during this part. While some stories have unresolved or unsatisfying endings, you should really strive to make your resolution as satisfying as possible.

4. Point Of View

The point of view is an integral part of your story because it is the perspective from which the story is told. There are multiple points of view that you could utilize in your writing. These types of point of views are first person, second person, third person, and third person omniscient. If you are going to use the first person point of view, you should use first-person pronouns such as “I”, “you” and “my”.

On the other hand, if you are going to use the second person point of view, you should use second person pronouns such “you” and “your”. The key difference between first person and second person point of view, is that the reader is made as a character within the story.

If you are going to use the third person point of view, you should know that there are two types of third person view. There is the limited third person view, and the third person omniscient. If you are going to use the limited third person view, you should write the story from an outsider’s perspective. You should use pronouns such as “he”, “her”, and “they”. The key characteristic of limited third person view, is that the story follows a single character. On the other hand, if you are going to use the omniscient third person point of view, you should follow all the characters in your story. This is an all-encompassing point of view.

5. Characters

Your characters are an extremely important aspect of your story because they are the bit players that will push your story forward. While you could create a whole cast of characters, the most essential characters that you could create is the protagonist, and the antagonist of your story. They are very important because they are the key players in your story.

The protagonist is important because the whole story will revolve around him or her. Your protagonist will be pitted against key challenges that will test his or her resolve. The antagonist is very important because the antagonist will be the one who provides the conflict to the story. The conflict is important to your story, because it will be the spark that sets off the story. The conflict will push your story forward.

6. Theme

The themes are the central ideas or concepts that every story should contain. These ideas are often used in the story multiple times. When you come up with a theme, it must be an interesting and unique concept. The more interesting your theme is, the more chances you will have of keeping your reader’s attention. If you are going to choose a theme for your story, you should try to think outside the box. The more unique your theme, the better.

7. Language

When it comes to literary elements, language is by far the most important. Through your use of language, you will be able to convey your ideas to your readers. Language could be designated as speech, gestures, sounds, or marks. Every bit of literature ever created is written in a recognized language. If you want to write properly, you will need to know how to use your respective language as efficiently and effectively as possible.


If you want to improve your writing skills, it is important that you are familiar with key literary elements. These elements will add substance to your content, and allow you to convey your ideas more effectively. With these tips, you’ll be able to write in the most effective way possible.

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