Literary Techniques come in a wide variety of shapes and flavors.
Let’s take a look at three great techniques to see how they create mood and effect the drama of a piece of fiction.
Literary Techniques: The Long And The Short Of It
Sentence length and structure controls the pace and mood of a paragraph. Paragraphs control the pace and mood of the scene. Scenes control the pace and mood of the novel.
Use a short sentence. It creates a choppy effect. They are fast to read. So the reader gets the effect of speed.
While longer, more complex sentences, take more time to read and absorb. The reader must think about what he is reading and this slows the reader down so that he gets the effect of slowness.
But, there are many other sentence types that can be used as literary techniques.
Find more examples on the art of styling sentences click here.
Literary Techniques: Creating Character Emotions
Emotion is a literary technique to involve the reader. Portraying emotion is one of the most difficult things to do as a young writer.
Someone new to writing might portray gratitude (or any emotion) like this
John received his long awaited birthday present with glee. He unwrapped the paper and opened the box to find the electromagnetic glow of the toy he wanted. “Oh, thank you so much,” he said happily, “It’s just what I wanted.”
When portraying a character emotion it needs to be within a context. Take some time to think about what the context is and what physical visible actions will represent the emotion.
Here is how Amy Tan portrays gratitude in her story “Rules of the Game” when her family receives a used chess set.
When we got home, my mother told Vincent to throw the chess set away. “She not want it. We not want it,” she said, tossing her head stiffly to the side with a tight, proud smile. My brothers had deaf ears. They were already lining up the chess pieces and reading from the dog-eared instruction book.
Literary Techniques: Wild Mood Swings
The story you tell may need an authoritative, almost collegiate style to develop the mood as Poe uses in Murders in the Rue Morgue.
As the strong man exults in his physical ability, delighting in such exercises as call his muscles into action, so glories the analyst in that moral activity which disentangles. He derives pleasure from even the most trivial occupations bringing his talent into play. He is fond of enigmas, of conundrums, of hieroglyphics; exhibiting in his solutions of each a degree of acumen which appears to the ordinary apprehension præternatural.
Or, perhaps you need a more lofty and lyrical voice as I used in The Vagabond King.
The crossroads, this is the intersection of time and space, life and death, the sacred and the profane. It is the place where everything becomes one and divides again. It is here all differences are born and all dualities are atoned. It is the place where Oedipus met and slew his father. It is the beginning of the end and the end of the beginning. The crossroads: in the transplanted traditions of African slaves in the New World the crossroads is a place of great mystery, a place of powerful mojo, a place of the most potent magic where one can come to seek a destiny, seal a fate or meet a doom.