Types of Narrative Structures

LINEAR – This type of story flows from start to finish, this type of structure is used greatly in soaps because its easy to follow and easy to create new stories. However this type of structure could also be seen as boring.

NON – LINEAR – The story does not flow from beginning to end. For example it could start in the middle or even at the end (use of flashback).

OPEN/CLOSED ENDINGS – An open ending is where the story is left to the viewer to guess what has happened at the end (usually for sequels). A closed ending is where the story is all wrapped up in the ending (for example a crime show might like to show the criminal using this type of ending)

FLASHBACK – Usually used to break up a linear structure to make it non-linear.

REALIST – A narrative story based on real life events and things that the viewing public can relate to. These types of narratives can be easy for people to relate to but sometimes can offend people.

ANTI – REALIST – A narrative or plot that is not meant to be easy to relate to and is normally something out of the ordinary. An example of an anti-realist film is Star Wars.

The different genres for narrative stories are:

  • Documentary
  • Fiction
  • Scientific
  • Theoretical
  • Poetic
  • Personal/Diary

The different strategies for narrative stories are:

  • Textual narrative
  • Text as image
  • Still image
  • Tableau
  • Moving image
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