The 5 Essential Elements of a storytelling

The 5 Essential Elements of a storytelling

Do you want to understand the 5 essential elements of a story? You have come to the right place. A good story should be like a journey for the reader. They should feel like it’s happening to them, right alongside the protagonist. It should have an emotional impact on them and leave them feeling satisfied at the end. Join our Content Creation Academy

The five key components of a story are:

  • The characters,
  • The setting,
  • The plot,
  • The conflict,
  • And the resolution.

These essential elements provide structure and order to a story, allowing it to develop logically and smoothly. Now, let’s look at each of them more closely.

Characters in storytelling

Characters are really important in stories, and they fall into different categories like human beings, animals, or objects. Generally, the most important characters have the greatest effect on what happens in the story.

Characters are the backbone of any story. Without them, there would be no plot and no story to speak of.

They can have a big impact on the plot, changing their role as the events in the story unfold. In order to make readers care about your characters, they need to have depth and change as they go through the ups and downs of your plot points.

We can classify character types by their function in a story as followed:

The protagonist

The protagonist is the main character of a narrative who has an important role in a story and tends to be involved in or affected by the majority of events that take place in the story.

For example, Snow White, who is typically a protagonist figure, is only (usually) involved in the first act of her story when she falls victim to the curse cast upon her by her jealous stepmother.

The antagonist

The protagonist’s main opposition character is called the “antagonist.” We need antagonists so that there can be conflict, and they can be found in every literary work.

Secondary characters

Secondary characters are those in our stories who have a significant role and who appear in multiple scenes, but who are not the main focus of the primary plot. These supporting characters may be the focal point of their own subplots.

Other types of characters in storytelling could include:

  • Deuteragonists characters,
  • The confidant characters,
  • And tertiary characters and more.

Characters are what make up your story. The plot and setting are just elements that help characters lead their individual journeys while ultimately making your story what it is.

Your characters play a huge role in crafting your story and engaging with readers. They are active participants who help to shape the world you are creating, both through their physical presence in the environment and how they might interpret it, and the readers get to explore that world through these characters’ eyes.

The role of Setting in storytelling

In storytelling, settings can be real-time periods in a known location or unfamiliar worlds with unknown locations. Settings also include the landscape (physical and cultural), environmental conditions, and prevailing weather. Settings reveal a great deal about the story.

The setting is a crucial part of storytelling. It defines the mood, and the tone and provides weight to the narrative. Writers often use specific settings to help tell their story and convey themes such as

  • Loneliness,
  • Isolation,
  • Or claustrophobia as the case may be.

Setting often plays a big role in how readers see the story. For instance, the setting of a crime story usually creates a sense of menace.

This is why horror novels are typically set in isolated places, while romance novels are more often set in small towns. Setting can be an important part of a story and can even feel like a character itself.

What is the story plot?

A plot is an important part of a story that focuses on the actions, reactions, and effects that a protagonist experience.

A strong plot is centered around one event that creates a dramatic question that must be answered through the protagonist’s journey.

Plotting is a key aspect that authors focus on when writing their stories. It’s basically the foundation of any story – the “what” of everything. Some people would rather plot out their novels beforehand, but some don’t even bother to do that.

What are conflicts in a story?

In a literary work, a conflict is when an external or internal conflict creates the starting point for a story. For example, in a superhero movie, the main character might have to battle an evil villain or stop the world from being taken over by aliens with powers. A writer would use conflict as a way to tell their story and keep their audience engaged throughout the story.

Conflict is one of the most important elements in literature and film. It creates the narrative thread for a story and is what makes reading or watching so interesting to the viewer. When there is no conflict, there isn’t much of a story, which makes some stories boring to read.

There are three common types of conflict to choose from as:

  • Person vs. person,
  • Person vs. nature,
  • And person vs. self.

Resolution in a story

Resolutions are essential to any story. They usually offer a way to resolve the central conflict introduced at the beginning of the story. They are not always uplifting but do provide readers with some sense of closure.

The resolution is the finale. It’s the part of the story where you find out what happens to the characters after things resolve themselves.

The resolution can be the most difficult part of the story to write. It’s the finale, and it’s not always easy to know how things will work out for your characters when all the conflicts are resolved.

The following tips will help you write a successful resolution:

  • Keep it short – sometimes less is better,
  • The resolution to your story should be the shortest part of the story.
  • Don’t make it too easy for your characters.

If they were in a struggle with life and ended up winning, don’t have them instantly experience a new level of happiness just because the story is over. If something is missing from their lives, then you should write about it.

The point of the story is not to wipe away problems with a happy ending. Make sure you pay attention to this and the rest of The 5 essential elements of storytelling and you are on your way to telling your stories like a pro.

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