Character, Theme & Setting Do Make A Difference

Yashasvi Soni
Mar 12, 2019   •  437 views

As we have been discussing details about a short story & its component, here are some more important factors:


Characters are an essential ingredient of a story. There are two meanings of the word character:

  1. A person in a story
  2. Traits of a person or characteristics of the person

A short story has a relatively limited scope, and its characters are seldom fully developed. However, a good short story often provides a ‘whole’ or satisfying treatment of its characters. In a short story, one character is clearly central to the story with all the major events having importance to this character, referred to as the protagonist. The characters who oppose the main character are called antagonist.

Characters must seem real to the readers, so they can relate to it. The characterization is the information that the author gives to the readers about character themselves. The author portrays a character in the following ways:

  • Physical Appearance;
  • Feelings, how a character is feeling during a certain scene;
  • Actions, half of Sherlock Holmes work is based on what the victim does/does;
  • What others say about him

In real life there are no absolute characters, everyone is bad in some else’s story. In a good story character are must be lifelike, with complex virtues & vices. It should seem as if the fictional character is someone we could come across in real life.

Characters are classified in two categories by E.M. Forster “Round” & “Flat”, individuals with a growing personality with complex emotions these evolve as the story progresses & individuals with a stereotypical personality with static behavior, they don’t arouse much interest in reads, respectively.


The theme in a story refers to its central insight. It is the authors underlying meaning of the main idea that is conveyed in the story. The can be authors thought about something or a general point of view or sometimes human nature. Loyalty, fate, love, greed, ambition, sacrifice, jealousy are some common themes in a short story. The authors use various figures of speech like allusion, irony, pathos, allegory & symbolism.


A story must have a setting. The setting is the atmosphere, background, geographic location, era in which the story takes place. Conditions of time & place give a touch of realism to the story. It also decides the mood of the story and what are the social conditions of the time. The setting also plays an important role in interpreting the symbolic references correctly in any story.

Point of View

The perspective of the story is defined this way.

  • First-person: The narrator uses the pronouns I, me, we, etc., in his speech. The sees story through this person's perspective.This person is either a protagonist or a character close to him/her.
  • Second- person: It is the narrative mode in which the protagonist is referred to as a second person using pronouns like you, your, yours, etc.
  • Third-person: The omniscient; the author himself narrated the story, giving all the details. He moves from character to character, scene to scene uses they, she, he, etc., for the pronoun.

Hope we know all the keynotes necessary to write a brilliant short story.

Happy Writing!! y'all.