Common prose (fiction) language techniques

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The writer compares two things using like or as. My teacher is like a witch.
An image which compares two things without using like or as. My teacher is a witch.
A figure of speech in which an object or animal is given human feelings, thoughts, or abilities. The sun smiled down on us.
A thing that represents or stands for something else, especially a material object representing something abstract. The fence represents prejudice.
Repetition of initial consonant sounds. The bad boy bulldozed past me.
Conversation between characters.
A recurring image, word or phrase which can unify the writing and help to develop an idea or atmosphere.
First person narrative
A narrative told by a character involved in the story, using first-person pronouns such as I and we.
Third person narrative
when the narrator is not part of the story, rather referring to characters as “he” or “she”.
stream of consciousness
a style of writing that portrays the inner (sometimes chaotic) workings of a character’s mind.
An indirect, less offensive way of saying something that is considered unpleasant. Pass away rather than die.
A word that imitates the sound it represents.
Very informal language consisting of words and expressions that are not considered appropriate for formal occasions.
Colloquial language
Informal, everyday language which gives a sense of familiarity or informality.
Repeated use of sounds, words, or ideas for effect and emphasis.
The turning point or most exciting moment of a story, in which the main character comes face to face with the main conflict and a change happens.
Extended metaphor
A metaphor which is repeated and developed, occurring frequently in or throughout a work
chronological order
(Time Order) Events are arranged in the order in which they happened.
A literary device in which an earlier episode, conversation, or event is inserted into the chronological sequence of a narrative.
Short sentence
A short sentence is short and has one complete verb. It can create a sense of action and speed or build suspense. It was midnight.
An abrupt, excited utterance. Never!
A common, often used expression that doesn’t make sense if you take it literally. It never rains but it shines.
A figure of speech consisting of two apparently contradictory terms. Bitter-sweet.
Pathetic Fallacy
When the environment reflects the emotions of a character. For example, the storm in Romeo and Juliet reflecting the inner turmoil of the characters.
Categories: Prose