Narrative Structure | Behind the Story

Now that you have a setting, it’s time to get ready to tell the story. First, you’ll need to decide how that is going to happen. There are different ways for a story to unfold. This effects the timeline of the story and how much involvement the reader has in how the story progresses.

Linear: The story is told chronologically.

Nonlinear: Told out of order, either through alternating timelines or by including frequent flashbacks.

Interactive: The story progresses through the interaction of the reader. This includes choose-your-own-adventure style books as well as video games. This may mean the ending depends on the choices the reader made, or it may just be a more engaging way for the reader to reach the predetermined ending.

Graphic: Told primarily or entirely through images. Could involve any of the other three structures. This, of course, includes graphic novels and manga. It can also include animations and films.

Much like with genre, there are endless ways to categorize and describe the way a story is presented. Choose the one that serves your story the best, but also one that is fun for you to create.