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Suspense In Short Stories Essay

995 words - 4 pages

Suspense is one of the most important elements of storytelling. When one reads a story the setting is a very important key to creating suspense for the reader this is very crucial for short stories because they have a shorter period for the reader to get intrigued. Many of today’s modern world readers prefer a fast moving intense drama, which is filled with plenty of character drama. This in terms will grab the reader’s attention as well as holds their attention from the first page to the end of the book. More so most settings serve as the backdrop, and create the mood and feeling of the story. And suspense is a given in most stories. Suspense is feeling tension or anxious uncertainty about what the outcomes of certain events in a story will be. In this essay I will be discussing, suspense in terms of its uses in a short story. I also intend to discuss the importance/role of suspense in two short stories which are as follows, The Lottery by Shirley Jackson and Edgar Allen Poe’s The Tell-Tale Heart.
I believe that suspense in a story is what determines if a reader continues to read the story or decides that it is to predicable and places it back on the shelf. Therefore one story that suspense plays an important role is, The Lottery by Shirley Jackson .Even though when reading the story at first time the mood given by the setting is normal day in a typical small town; however the questions that the readers begin to think of creates the suspense in itself. This is because many other readers may begin to wonder why, who, how, and why drawing up conclusion which in terms makes the story more suspenseful. An example would be when as the reader becomes very intrigued to read what will occur next and who will finally win the lottery. I was also coming up with scenarios of what the winning prize might be in the year 1948, by using what the author provided for the setting and the mood. I also would include the younger children since they were too able to play the lottery, which I thought was a tad strange since they are so young. However when character Tessie lashes out and protest that her husband did not have enough time to pick carefully, the reader wonders why is she so upset if she is part of the winning lottery family.
This also allowed the author to reach an important goal which is to sustain the reader's interest. The reader goes through the entire ritual, hearing names and watching the men approach the box to select their papers. The author makes it seem like winning the lottery is part of a good tradition until its true implications begin to unravel within the story. Also since the author never tells us ( the reader) what the lottery is about, or mentions any kind of prize or purpose, when one is reading...

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