Understanding basic elements of a story

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We must have read about story elements many times. And as a natural writer, you must have already used all of these in your stories without having to think much. However, there are certain points to consider when developing the elements of a story. In this article, you will notice that conflict/tension is described as the fifth story element, because it is the most important ingredient of your story.


  1. Setting: The place in which majority of the story takes place. Sometimes, the setting changes dynamically as the lead character in the story changes their place.
  2. Characters: The imaginary persons we create for the story. There are major and minor characters in the story. The major character or the protagonist is the strong/lead character that drives the plot forward and equally important is the antagonist or the villain character because he/she aids in moving the plot forward. The other characters in the story aid the main characters in some scenes, indirectly helping the readers understand some elements of the plot or the character’s morality.
  3. Scene: The events of the plot. Each scene has to move the plot forward. Again, just like we have a beginning, middle and an end to a story, each scene should have a beginning, middle and an end, the ending of each scene is very important because it has to move the plot forward.
  4. Plot: Overall story of the book.
  5. Conflict/Tension: This is possibly not considered as an element in some books, but this is the most important thing for any story. Just like how the dish tastes bland without salt, without conflict/tension, the story/plot becomes boring. Every scene should create tension and the tension should increase throughout the book. Even the most soft stories should have tension. Regardless of the genre in which you write, either the fast paced or the slow paced; tension is the most important element for any story.

Do you agree that conflict/tension is indeed the main ingredient for any story? If not, why?

Writing is what I do for the love of it. The passion for writing has always been there with me but discovering it happened later. One famous poet rightly said: "A word is mightier than a sword." And I am a firm believer of that saying. Through words, a writer can inspire, motivate, and take the reader to a different world. My first work of fiction #fortunefair is available on Amazon.

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