Setting up a Story Characteristics with Examples

Setting up a Story

The approach of a story is the initial part of the three that this narrative genre has. Its purpose is to present all the aspects related to the plot of the story; that is, what are the characters, where does the plot occur, what happens to them and why it happens to them. In this article we will provide you information how to set up a story.

The structuring to which the approach of a story belongs is not new; Aristotle formulated it more than 2000 years ago in his work ARs Poética. The Greek philosopher alluded to the fact that the stories, in their organization, presented a descriptive beginning, a middle, and an end, and that this was the simplest form of plotting.

The introductory words, typical of the approach to a story, play a crucial role in capturing the reader’s attention; therefore, they require suspicion and assertive handling of language on the part of the issuer. Poor execution of the narrative in the approach can mean the lack of understanding of the plot or the abandonment of the reading.

Based on what is stated in the previous paragraph, it corresponds to the approach of a story, to this unit of narrative action, to promote an adequate literary environment that leads the reader to discover the entire theme of a story around a protagonist without losing an instant the courage to continue reading.

How to set up a story Characteristics

Character traits are sketched

In this phase, the characters that make up the plot and the functions that they will perform within it are revealed. By means of accurate and concise descriptions, an attempt is made to sketch the faces of each one of them, so that with a few words they can be fixed in the mind of the reader.

It is necessary that in this presentation the main characters are differentiated from the secondary ones. Whoever occupies the position of the protagonist requires having well-defined qualities that differentiate him from the rest and make him worthy of being the one capable of turning history upside down in the face of a disagreement.

Not only physical, but also psychological and phonological aspects can be drawn; that helps to create greater connections in the mind of the reader, which makes the experience more vivid and causes more impact.

Draw the atmosphere of the plot

This is perhaps one of the most relevant aspects of the approach to a story. The description of the environment has a wide value, gives textures, provides smells, colors and sensations to the reader.

A good lyrical speaker pays a lot of attention to the setting of a story, since if an element is described correctly, without the need to name it directly in the other units of narrative action —understand: middle and end—, its images persist and the memory resorts to these easily, giving strength to the speech.

The environment is not only the green roads, the rivers, the mountains, and the climate. It is necessary to consider what concerns the deep context of production, such as the economic situation, the war situation, and even the health situation that exists in the place.

The more elements are added to the setting – yarns, of course, intelligently for the same purpose – the space becomes populated, denser, and the reader becomes engulfed by the story. That is the real goal of the setting.

The events that expose the plot are displayed

After presenting the characters and outlining them broadly and clearly, after drawing the aspects of the area and the socio-political context in which the plot is circumscribed, it is time to show the events that, little by little, will lead to the complication of things.

Here it is suggested to place small events that warn what is going to happen, without it happening; This part is an introduction to the narrative climax. If a good descriptive job was done on the setting and the characters, this is easy to expose and cope with.

The proposition of this series of events will be subject to the characteristics of each writer. However, in general the authors agree that they should be treated with suspicion, they are elements of great value that deserve to be placed in just moments to obtain the desired impact reactions in the reader.

Orients all edges  to the same point

During the presentation of the characters, setting and events that give way to the development of the plot, it must be ensured that each of these elements is intertwined and points towards the same end.

It cannot be ignored that the story is a short and impressive narrative unit focused on a direct message, it does not accept more than a central plot; therefore, everything that is mentioned revolves around that theme.

In the approach, everything that is shown leads the reader to the same point without allowing him to get out of the communicative thread. If the link with the reader is lost, the story diminishes its power.

Makes the knot make sense

This is because the approach, if treated in the appropriate way, lays the structural bases that allow the climax to be sustained. In the approach, the reader is given all the power of knowledge regarding the plot, up to the point of tension, but not what will happen in the outcome.

That feeling of power (also of belonging, of inclusion in the events) that is given to the reader gives transcendence to the story and is only achieved by managing the narrative resources properly.


The great third

“That day did not dawn either. If his biological clock did not fail, there were already three consecutive mornings, with their afternoons and nights, completely in the dark.

Jorge was 23 years old. A young man with a dark complexion, light eyes. He was lucid and intelligent, with a hoarse voice from poorly healed tonsillitis and lame on his right leg from inclement polio from when he was a child.

At that time I was in the 7th semester of Engineering at the university. It had been two months since everything had stopped, educational institutions, supermarkets, companies. Sixty days had already passed after the two great northern factions, from each end of the plane, raised their voices to proclaim the third and final.

Food was becoming scarce at home. His mother and brother had to eat only what was necessary for that night. He had thought it through. He would never have imagined himself in such a situation, but the image of a 60-year-old woman and a 15-year-old boy, both under his care, starving, was something he could not afford.

He went to the room of his father, a retired military man who died on the border 10 years ago, and went to his closet. The weather outside was cold, the pole lights barely shone on, and people prowled every corner in search of some food. Upstairs, next to the patent leather militia shoe boxes, was the magnum.

He had not finished taking it and loading it with the cartridges when he heard a sharp knock on the door, then the metal rumbling on the floor, a deafening scream from his mother followed by the cry of his brother… ”.

Bottom fish

“He always yearned for them, since he was a child, from the day he saw old Luis Macha come out of the sea with that harpoon in his right hand and a 15-kilogram harpoon on his left shoulder.

That was 10 years ago. He is no longer a child, he is even a father and expects another child who will arrive in just three months with a full moon, according to the village witch.

Juan became a fisherman, like Luis and the many other men of the town, not like his father who was never there and was crazy among letters and other demons. 20 years old, a ranch facing the sea, a 19-year-old brunette who loves him, a one-year-old boy and another on the way, food in his hands and rest when he pleases; couldn’t ask for more.

Palm trees abounded on the edge of the coast, fighting spaces with the uveros. The barges became wooden buildings stuck in the sand, brief skeletons of a tired brown, rooms for time, and crabs.

Although Juan had already been at the job for 5 years, he had not achieved his first great spearfishing by lung, not like Luis, not like he dreamed. That particular night, full moon like a wandering soul, he decided to go to sea in his paddle boat to fulfill his dream.

He had everything he needed, kissed his son’s forehead, his wife’s belly and said goodbye while they slept. Everything pointed to the fact that that night would bring good things, everything pointed to that, but the sea is a being that writes its paths with indecipherable letters… ”.

We hope that you have understood how to set up a story.

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