• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

An essential element of a short story is its ending. Discuss this statement with reference to two short stories of your choice

Extracts from this document...


Short Stories Essay " An essential element of a short story is its ending. Discuss this statement with reference to two short stories of your choice " Although short stories had been written for hundreds of years, it wasn't until the nineteenth century that they became popular. Short stories are not merely 'mini novels' but are a genre in their own right with certain distinctive characteristics. They are much shorter than novels, therefore must begin and end purposely. They usually only have one main event, normally concentrating on one theme, incident or person. Short stories often have powerful endings, sometimes a very unexpected resolution. Without this essential element, short stories would not be as popular and well liked as they now are. The first short story I am going to write about is 'An Arrest'. This very short story recounts the tale of Orrin Bower, a vicious criminal who was in jail in Kentucky for the murder of his brother-in-law. He escaped from the jail by knocking down the jailer (Burton Duff) with an iron bar. He stole his keys, walked out the door and into the forest. After a while of walking round the forest, which he did not know his way around, in the pitch black of night he came to a road. There before him, stood on the road was the distinct figure of a man, "motionless in the gloom". ...read more.


The first family was the Tuvaches, who had three girls and one boy. The second family was the Vallins, who had three boys and one girl. They all lived on a merged diet of soup, potatoes and fresh air. Now as you can see from this, the writer portrays the families as peasant farmers, who are very poor. He does this by the way he describes things such as the food that they eat. One August afternoon a horse and trap drew up unexpectedly outside the two cottages. The young women in it started talking about how the children were so pretty and how she would love to have one. The writer chooses this language to make the young lady sound as if she just wants to pick a child and take them, like getting a toy from a shop. A few days later the lady came back again, and gave them cakes and sweets. She then came back again, got to know the parents, and started making a daily appearance with her pockets bulging with sweets. Here the writer is trying to make it sound like the lady is trying to buy the children's hearts with cakes and sweets. The children come from poor backgrounds, therefore the only time they get things like this is when the lady comes to the cottages. The lady's name was Madame d' Hubires. ...read more.


He told them that he blamed them because he didn't get a chance in life. He said, "O' course I blame you, I blame you for being so soft in the head. Parents like you are the reason children get held back. It'd serve you right if I upped sticks and off." This twist will have come as a very big shock to the readers, as they were probably expecting Charlot to be happy his parents kept him. The writer makes him look very ungrateful. His mother started crying talking about how she had killed herself bringing up kids for nothing. So Charlot stood up and walked out the house shouting, "know what you are, stupid bogtrotting yonkels!" and with that he vanished into the night. So as you can see the ending was the total opposite to what you would expect. So at the end of the story, the Vallins were reunited and the Tuvaches were split up. The setting of the story fits in very well because it shows how poor the families were and why the money from selling the child was so important. I think the moral of this story is ' In some situations, there is never a right answer.' I think in both of the short stories I have written about the ending has dramatically changed the story for the better. The writer has done this by carrying the same theme all the way through the story, but has still managed to create the unpredictable ending needed to make any short story successful. Sean Morton 29th January 2004 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Composition section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Composition essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    In the short story The Web by Frances King, 1995, we hear about a ...

    She has had a one-night stand and she ends up sleeping with this strange man that she meets. "At a gesture from this stranger - was she crazy? ... Liz clambered into the van. Her companion clambered in after her.

  2. AS English Language Short Story

    She yearned to see them again. "I bet you thought that this was never going to happen again did you?" He scarily uttered, as Lara sobbed incessantly. He charged around in an intimidating fashion and fearful manner, but unknown to him, she had been chaffing at the rope that bound her wrists so tightly.

  1. Free essay

    Hamlet essay

    two men and to metaphorically represent through the language, the "hard" nature of Claudius, saying that Claudius was rather a; "Pestilencial collection of evil." conforming appropraitely to McLeish's criticism of Claudius; "alternately swaggering and cringing but always evil" through the corruption he creates within the Court, and thus, conforming to

  2. Conflict can never be fully resolved. Discuss

    For his wife Ann Putnam, a deeply resentful and psychologically disturbed mother of seven dead children, it is a perverse type of revenge that led her to engage in the conflict. She wants vengeance against the world, and thus is ultimately led to appease her discontented heart by afflicting similar

  1. "Strangers": a short story. My name is Dean and its everyone else thats crazy, ...

    He's slouching against a wall in that carefully calculated manner designed to look effortlessly cool. He's alone: that's why I pick him. I wait one, two, three, four seconds - and there it is. I watch as his hand slithers down to the pocket of those ridiculously tight jeans of

  2. The short story we read is The Possibility of Evil. In this short story, ...

    However, she never really takes the time to think about all that, until she eventually is discovered to be the source of the letters. At that very moment, she cannot understand why someone would do something as "evil" as destroying her prize roses, which is the very ironic ending of the story.

  1. John Feyeve sat on the bench and let the electronic glare of the tele-screen ...

    she gave another wink and a smile gave John one of the guards guns, pocketed the other one, and set off down the hall. John followed suite passing the wriggling guards on the floor holding their eyes. The two of them ran down the hallway stopping at a door at the end, the only door there.

  2. Witness 1985 Short Story. Composition and commentary.

    To Carter it looked more like a dangerous weapon he was about to commit some awful crime with. ?What the hell am I doing?? he said under his breath ?This is against the law.? How much was he risking for Book and the Lapps?

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work