reading and writing about fiction

Reading about Fiction

Reading fiction can be a wonderful escape from reality, allowing us to explore new worlds and perspectives. Fictional stories can also help us to understand our own lives and experiences in a new light. One of the most popular genres of fiction is romance, which explores the dynamics of relationships and often has a happy ending. A classic example of romance fiction is Pride and Prejudice” by Jane Austen.

Another popular genre is science fiction, which imagines what might be possible in the future or in alternate universes. A well-known example of science fiction is “1984” by George Orwell. Mystery novels, which typically involve a crime that must be solved, are another popular genre. Agatha Christie’s “Murder on the Orient Express” is a classic mystery novel. Historical fiction is also a beloved genre, transporting readers to different eras and cultures. One of the most well-known examples of historical fiction is “Gone with the Wind” by Margaret Mitchell. No matter what genre you prefer, reading fiction can be both entertaining and enlightening.

Writing about Fiction

Fiction writing is a unique and exciting way to share stories and experiences with readers. It allows authors to create new worlds and characters that can take readers on a journey of their own. Fiction can be written in many different genres, such as romance, science fiction, mystery, thriller, and fantasy.

One of the most famous examples of fiction writing is the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling. This series takes readers on a magical journey through the world of witches and wizards, captivating audiences of all ages. Another great example is “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald, which explores the decadent lifestyle of the wealthy in the 1920s.

Fiction writing allows authors to connect with their readers on a deeper level, as they explore different themes and emotions in their writing. Whether it’s through a fantastical world or a realistic portrayal of human emotion, fiction writing has the power to transport readers to a whole new world.

Plot and Characters

Plot and characters are two of the most important elements in any work of fiction. The plot is the sequence of events that make up the story, while the characters are the individuals who experience those events. A strong plot is essential for any piece of fiction as it keeps the reader engaged and interested.

Characters, on the other hand, are what make the plot interesting and meaningful. They add depth and emotion to the story and allow readers to connect with the narrative on a personal level. A good example of strong characters and plot can be found in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series. The story follows the life of a young boy who discovers he is a wizard and must navigate the world of magic while also facing off against the evil Lord Voldemort. The characters, from Harry himself to his friends Ron and Hermione, are all well-developed and integral to the story, while the plot is filled with twists and turns that keep readers hooked.

Another great example of strong characters and plot can be found in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series, which follows multiple characters in a medieval fantasy world as they navigate politics, war, and magic. The characters in Martin’s series are complex and flawed, which adds to the depth of the plot and keeps readers invested in the story.


Foreshadowing is a literary device used by authors to give hints or clues about what’s to come in the story. It’s a way of building suspense and keeping the reader engaged by providing hints or clues about the future. Examples of foreshadowing in fiction could include a character mentioning a particular object or event that could be significant later on in the story.

For instance, in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, the author foreshadows the significance of Harry’s scar by mentioning it throughout the story. Another example could be an ominous description of a character or setting that gives the reader a sense of foreboding. In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “The Scarlet Letter,” the scaffold is a constant presence throughout the story, foreshadowing pivotal moments in the plot. Foreshadowing can be used in a variety of ways to create tension and intrigue within a story, making it an essential tool for many writers.

Setting of Fiction

In fiction writing, setting is the physical and social context in which a story takes place. It can be described as the time and place in which the story occurs, as well as the physical and emotional environment that surrounds the characters. The elements of setting include time, place, atmosphere, and mood. Time refers to the historical period in which the story takes place, while place refers to the physical location. Atmosphere and mood describe the emotional tone of the setting, including the weather, lighting, and other sensory details that help create the overall feeling of the story.

An example of a well-crafted setting is the dystopian world of George Orwell’s 1984. The story takes place in a totalitarian society where the government has complete control over every aspect of citizens’ lives. The setting is bleak and oppressive, with the characters living in constant fear of the government. The physical environment reflects the emotional state of the characters, with the city being described as a “gloomy town” with “grimy streets.” The setting in 1984 emphasizes the theme of the novel, which is the dangers of a totalitarian government and the importance of individual freedom.

Atmosphere of Fiction

Atmosphere in fiction refers to the overall feeling or mood created by the author’s use of language, setting, and tone. It is the emotional environment that surrounds the characters and the story itself, and it can range from spooky and tense, to cozy and romantic, to bleak and foreboding.

A great example of atmosphere in fiction can be found in the classic horror novel, “Dracula” by Bram Stoker. The author creates a creepy and ominous atmosphere through his use of gothic language, dark and eerie settings, and a general feeling of unease and terror.

Another excellent example can be seen in the novel “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald, where the author uses a luxurious and glamorous setting to create a romantic and nostalgic atmosphere, full of longing and desire. Atmospheric writing can have a powerful effect on the reader, drawing them into the story and making them feel as though they are a part of the world the author has created.


Symbols in fiction are objects, characters, or situations that have a deeper meaning than their literal sense. They often represent abstract concepts such as love, death, or ideas that are too complex to express in words. Symbols can add depth to a story and create connections between different parts of the narrative.

For example, the white whale in Herman Melville’s Moby Dick is a symbol of both the beauty and the terror of nature and the all-consuming obsession of Captain Ahab. The yellow wallpaper in Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s story of the same name is a symbol of the narrator’s mental state and the patriarchal society that confines her.

Another example is the mockingbird in Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, which symbolizes innocence and the injustice of killing something pure and good. Symbols can be subtle or obvious, and their meanings can be interpreted in various ways, making them a powerful tool for writers to convey complex ideas.

Points of View

Point of view in fiction refers to the perspective from which a story is told. There are three primary points of view: first person, second person, and third person.

  1. First person narrators are characters who tell the story from their own perspective, using “I” or “we.” This point of view is often used to create a sense of intimacy or immediacy with the reader. An example of first-person point of view is “The Catcher in the Rye” by J.D. Salinger. The protagonist, Holden Caulfield, tells the story in first person.
  2. Second person point of view is less common and involves addressing the reader directly with “you.” It is often used in instructional or self-help books. An example of second person point of view is “Bright Lights, Big City” by Jay McInerny. The entire novel is written in second person.
  3. Third person point of view is the most commonly used point of view in fiction. The narrator is outside of the story and uses “he,” “she,” or “they” to describe the characters and events. An example of third person point of view is “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee. The story is told from the perspective of Jean Louise Finch, also known as Scout, but the events are described in third person.

Writing about Drama

By Waqas Sharif

Mr. Waqas Sharif is an English Language Teaching (ELT) Professional, Trainer, and Course Instructor at a Public Sector Institute. He has more than ten years of Eng Language Teaching experience at the Graduate and Postgraduate level. His main interest is found in facilitating his students globally He wishes them to develop academic skills like Reading, Writing, and Communication mastery along with Basics of Functional Grammar, English Language, and Linguistics.

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