Short stories are written in the format of a narrative. They are fictional narratives based on the beginning or outline/hints/clues (verbal or visual) given in the question. The purpose of asking you to write a short story is to improve your creative and imaginative thinking. A story usually narrates an incident with its associated happenings or may expand on one thought or idea.

Main Elements of a Short Story

The different elements which comprise a short story are given below:

Theme : This is the main idea. It may be a message, moral, an abstract idea, a lesson learnt etc.

Plot : It is the logical sequence of events which leads to the conclusion. The type of plot may be adventurous, scary, a mystery, suspenseful, comic etc.

Setting : It is the background or location where the action takes place. It may be realistic or fictional.

Characters : The story usually has people, animals or other living creatures, but they must be based on real life to give the story credibility. Usually there is one main character in the story with other minor characters to support the plot.

Mood/Atmosphere : It may be cheerful/ happy, tense, scary, suspenseful or neutral, depending on the question.

Steps to Write a Short Story

  1. Start the story in an interesting manner which attracts the readers.
  2. Develop the characters in the story through meaningful dialogues.
  3. Use the setting and context to develop the mood and atmosphere.
  4. Develop the plot by creating tension or a conflict through opposition between characters or between the main character and external forces.
  5. Build up a climax and find a resolution to the conflict, thus ending the story appropriately.

Points to be Kept in Mind

  • Focus should be on a single incident.
  • Always use past tense while writing a story.
  • Frame the story keeping in mind the central characters.
  • Consequences/Climax of the story should be clear and satisfying.
  • Make simple and innovative use of language.
  • Stick to the limit of 150-200 words.
  • Make sure that the story has a moral/message if it requires one.
  • A title may be given to the story if the question requires it; otherwise it is optional.

Marking Scheme for Short Story

Title : 1 Mark
Content : 4 Marks
Accuracy : 2.5 Marks
Fluency : 2.5 Marks

Total : 10 Marks

Format of a Short Story

Write a short story in 150-200 words with cues given in the box.

It was very early on a cloudy morning when I was wakened by the sound of bells ringing outside the closed door of my room. I jumped out of my bed instantly to see if a surprise awaited me. I want to………….

Format of an Article