• 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. AS English Language Short Story

    All of a sudden he came at her sharply, the knife pointing in her direction. She wrestled at the rope and managed to break free. She threw her arm out and clutched at the knife. Blood began to drip like that of rainwater.

  2. Short story 'A Little of What Was Deserved' with attached commentary

    Her anger boiled over. She wasn't going to feel sorry for herself. She was going to show him what she was really made of. Grunting in disgust the man began stuffing his mouth full of the tender pork covered in gravy. She went over to the fruit bowl to get her tea.

  1. Free essay

    Hamlet essay

    Shakespeare shows us through the language used, Hamlet's contrast in opinion of the two brothers, using soft consonants and assonance to portray the awe felt by Hamlet and also by the rest of the Court when considering Hamlet Senior; "A was a man" and using hard consonants to compare the

  2. Horror Story

    When she awoke the plate had been replaced with a bottle of water and several more candles. Starving, she drained the bottle hoping that it will quench her hunger but to no avail. The air was starting to get thick.

  1. Conflict can never be fully resolved. Discuss

    It defies rationality. Deep down, Ann Putnam knew she was simply a victim of bad luck, but her human weakness, her irrepressible emotion, compelled her to ignore such rationale.

  2. English short story.

    "Well I am glad you found the way!" Lucy beamed, "Are we going to stay out here all day then?" she added, and gave a childish smile. "Come on in!" Lucy ran back to the house, followed by Polina, Jennifer and Cassie.

  1. Witness 1985 Short Story. Composition and commentary.

    Going to prison, certainly, but perhaps something even worse? He couldn?t help but think what Schaefer and McFee would do if they found out. At that moment Carter looked down at his badge. Even upside-down he could read the brass coloured motto engraved into it.

  2. 9/11 - Who's to blame? Summarising the conspiracy theories.

    The main suspect, Osama Bin Laden, actually admitted in a video made in 2009 for other leaders of Al-Qaeda that was ?accidently? intercepted by American intelligence. ?Accidentally? ? so they intercepted secret videos but had no idea they would be attacked?

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