Elements of Story: How Genre Impacts the Importance of Five Story Elements

Have you ever wondered how the elements of story impact your book’s category? Do some elements of story have greater importance in a work because of the book’s genre?

Elements of Story

I can think of several times when I’ve gone to a eatery and made the time to slowly chew my nutrient, so I can experience how each of my smells is impacted by the food: from delicacy to smell to sight.

The level of importance the elements of story have on genre isn’t so different. We all have particular tastes–factors that appeal to us in different ways on our taste buds–and it’s the same with our learn preferences. I came to understand this in a profound path when I worked for our local library system, which I’d like to share with you today.

Readers pray particular “flavors” and genre assistants them define what they like and discover more of it.

How the five elements of story vary in level of importance because of the category may impact your perspective–and in a good way, for columnists trying to satisfy their target readers!

Looking at Genre From a Different Perspective

In my last article, Book Genre: Why Figuring Out Your Genre Will Help Your Story Succeed, I explored the reasons genre is so important to readers, novelists, publishers, and purveyors. Also in it, I parted you to some resources to help you informed about genre.

One brilliant route of studying category is to focus on the obligatory scenes and conventions inherent in each genre.

I remember how elicited I was when I discovered Shawn Coyne’s bible, The Story Grid. By the time I finished the first section, I knew “peoples lives” as a scribe was going to change in wonderful channels. The podcast is spectacular, too.

As much as I highly recommend studying these aspects of genre, in this article I’m going to take a different approach, by looking at genre in agreement with the story’s components.

Five Elements of Story to Include In Your Book( And Consider When Determining Your Genre)

For the purposes of this article, I’m going to focus on five factors that go into every story.

1. Plot

By plot, I symbolize the order of events that compose the rise and fall of tension as the narrative progresses. This is where you’ll experience those obligatory panoramas make an appearance.

Ask yourself: what is the story arc of my plan, and how does this move the action of my legend forward?

2. Setting

Setting must be well-developed through the five senses, the rulings, and the sentiments of the POV character. Setting is also one of the elements of story that is important in spawning your story unique. Consider how the smothers of your character’s life can impact their actions and decisions.

You might also be interested in how to sketch setting in Scrivener, which we teach in this affix.

Ask yourself: how is my story same to others in its genre, but differs in setting? Why does this setting attract the readers of my category?

3. Characters

The important attributes in the narrative is essential to memorable and employ book sentiments. In addition, the reader should not be in doubt about whose story it is–knowing the difference between what makes a protagonist, antagonist, and corroborating references can also be directly related to the genre.

Character development is indispensable in any narrative, and undoubtably one of the mot important elements of story. “Its what” builds readers of your category care about the book.

Ask yourself: how does the tale arc challenge my protagonist, and why does my protagonist’s requirements and needs instantly conflict with the antagonist( s )?

4. Style

This is how you applied names on paper. It has to do with factors like sentence length and arrangement, thick-witted or thin quality, vocabulary, types of details and imagery, etc.

Style is one of those elements of story that is difficult to teach, but a good joke its focusing on sentence length variation. For speciman, Dr. Seuss had an extremely unique style that built his bibles timeless, which you might be interested in learning more about by construe the linked post.

Ask yourself: how do your convicts vary in length, and how does this support and develop a utter for your category? For illustration, thriller uncertainty journals were typically have shorter convicts, since there’s higher war and books of this category naturally look for fast-paced reads.

5. Voice

Here, I want attribute articulate, rather than author voice. Surprised you! Didn’t I?

I believe you can create character voice by various symbolizes, whereas generator singer comes through best when you’re not trying to control it at all.

Like style, enunciate is one of the elements of story that is hard to teach.

Ask yourself: how do each of my references resonate different from each other? Why do their unique expressions support the tone and extent of my bibles genre?

“ Have “youve been” considered how to prioritize the elements of story for the genre of your bible? Knowing the heirarchy of importance can help you write and edit your narrative! Tweet this

When considering your book’s genre, these five elements of story come into play in different ways. Now let’s take a look at some popular categories is how they add up.


Romance is probably the biggest genre in terms of sales, numbers of bibles, and the readers who read them. It displays a big sum of bestsellers and boasts a myriad of sub-genres which may slightly adjust the balance of these components.

In the romance genre, courage comes first–by a long shot.

Readers must fall in love with the characters as the characters fall in love with each other.

The second component is schemed. Leave out an important obligatory scene, like the” Meet Cute ,” the” First Kiss ,” or the” Proof of Love ,” and romance books will bring out the pitchforks.

Readers of your genre want these times, and it’s your job as the writer of this genre to understand is not simply the important elements of story, like patch obligatory places and convenings, but likewise how to apply them into the plot and arrangement.

Setting comes next, followed by style and articulation. These last two are roughly interchangeable as to importance. If you’re determined to write romance, be careful not to overemphasize settled, wording or voice–doing so will kick your romance into another category, such as literary( which is strictly defined by it’s more descriptive, melodic prose ), or historical fiction( locating train and story on something real in autobiography ).

Example: The Notebook

P.S. One more thought–romances must include a glad objective. Don’t forget this!


Like in tale, attribute comes first with Mystery .

It is a critical component as the character and book work closely settling a mystery.

Setting comes next, and includes the crime. You must pluck the reader right into the story with sensory detail, mind, and emotion. All of these are clearly defined by the genre’s target readers, all of whom are expecting a certain edge and suspense while unraveling the why of the mystery and crime.

The plot, in a puzzle is also hugely important because that’s where most of the evidences are laid out. Voice and mode can be almost neutral, saved very low-key, depending on the sub-genre of the mystery.

The ending must provide a solution–or at least a quench resolution–to the crime.

Examples: Agatha Christie diaries, Sherlock Holmes records


Thrillers lives and die on style. That’s number one, and embraces the pacing required in a successful thriller.

Next comes plot. Most thrillers incorporate an intricate area with lots of danger, but ensure that the good guys win, in the end.

Character, tone, and designating view roughly equal standings of importance and can be nipped up or down according to preference, as long as they don’t overpower style or plot.

Examples: The Girl on the Train, Gone Girl


As you might guess, the number one component of fantasy is setting.

The story makes place in a made-up world and gathering the reader into that world is all-important.

In primacies two and three are plot and courage. You can bring these two elements of story up or down as you please, but never elevate them with a higher importance than the unique, fresh contribution of setting to the story.

Style is important, but not critical and voice can be kept neutral, or not. But if you demand your book to sell, you should make certain the good guys triumph in the end.

Examples: The Name of the Wind, Harry Potter series, Uprooted

Science Fiction

As in Fantasy, positioning is the most essential component of science fiction–and can include vogue, in a way. Again, you are pulling the reader into a strange, new world and that defining is crucial to the telling of your story.

Next comes story, the machinists that come into play and drive the story forward.

Third, is reputation, followed by voice in fourth situate. These are notable elements of story in science fiction, but the support the setting and area rather than dominate the story.

And style can swim up or down on the scale, will vary depending on how you want to write it.

Example: Star Wars saga

Historical Fiction

It’s fairly obvious that setting will take the top caste in the historical fiction genre.

Style and area are next, and interchangeable in terms of importance.

Last come character and then voice, since the specific characteristics often support the historical event the planned is based on, and the utter is expected to have a somewhat literary tone.

Of course, the lower ranked constituents can slide up and down according to sub-genre and novelist preference.

Examples: The Nightingale, Water for Elephants, Before We Were Yours

Literary Fiction

The literary fiction genre calls for voice and wording to the extreme–since the prose is an acquired and important taste.

Readers and scribes of literary myth narratives love to be enthralled by lush language, urging references, and exquisitely beautiful turns of motto. But the voice and form of this works is expected to promote further discussion, which is also why it’s not surprising to find these deeds in academy curriculum.

Character and mounting follow voice and mode, with plot viewing a the last arrangement in the majority literary fiction elements of story importance.

However, be borne in mind that ALL elements of story are required for a good book, literary myth or any genre of book.

Examples: The Catcher in the Rye, Get killed a Mockingbird

Young Adult

Character is the most crucial component in a young adult book–the character must be of a certain age–which is also why most of these legends demo a coming of age arc.

But Voice leads a very close second. Very rarely do you find a YA book that isn’t first being limited, since the attitude of the character I crucial to its uniqueness. Keep in imagination, books of YA fiction love a reference with a strong, fresh, interesting utter and an sentiment about everything.

Setting, patch, and vogue move up and down the range, but never trump voice and character.

Examples: The Fault in the Stars, The Hate U Give, New Kid

How to Use Elements of Story for Your Book’s Recipe for Success

The next time you’re savoring a story, consider how the different components are coming together–like ingredients in a recipe — to satisfy your target reader’s imploring for a certain type of story.

As a final remembrance, such is 😛 TAGEND

Plot Setting Characters Style Voice

All of them are crucial to defining your diaries unique facets, and while the level of importance in how they define your journal( according to genre) diversifies, you need ALL of them to improve a volume that your target books will love.

For a more detailed study of this subject, consider taking the Genre Structure Workshop is proposed by WMG Publishing.

In my next essay, we’ll take a look at how readjusting the quantity of these five crucial element can change the result from one genre to another, presenting the narration a different spice and plea to a different audience.

See you next time!

How do the elements of story work in your narration? Do these modeling the level of importance for your book’s genre listed in this post? Tell us about it in the comments.


Today, you’re going to practice running one of your own storeys figuratively over your literary tongue to see if you can determine the ingredients and amounts.

Choose a fib you’ve completed and take a close look at it in terms of the five elements of story discussed in the article.

Then, write about how you required the elements of story and describe a bit about how you used each one. What category would you sit your floor into?

Write for fifteen minutes about your story’s recipe and genre. When you’re finished, announce your work in the comments, and don’t forget to provide feedback for your fellow scribes!

Happy writing!

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