Sunday, November 18, 2018

E - Exposition : Authors' Tips A to Z of writing

Today under the Authors' Tips A to Z of writing series, week for alphabet E, I have chosen to write on Exposition.

There are four rhetorical modes or modes of discourse; narration, argumentation, description, and exposition.

Exposition typically means giving information to the readers. While in non-fiction exposition is simply disseminating the information to the readers, but in fiction, one has to tackle it a bit subtly since straightforward exposition at times becomes boring for the readers. But before doing anything else let's understand the term 'exposition'.

‘Exposition’ in fiction or ‘narrative exposition’ refers to the background information in a story, to establish the context. Examples could be, character’s backstory, information about the setting, historical context.

Exposition can be accomplished in primarily two ways: Overt exposition, and Indirect exposition also known as ‘incluing’. Overt exposition is just an information dump, whereas Indirect exposition is subtly releasing information into the narrative—exposing the story world to the readers using dialogues, setting, backstory etc.

Let’s take an example: One can directly say that ‘Nina is a scholar’. But if the narrative says that ‘Using the published research papers, Nina corrected her thesis.’ The sentence now gives the same information and keeps the reader hooked on the environment too. The idea is to gently clue-in the readers to the characters and their world.

Overt exposition is sometimes used in fantasy or science fiction genre since the readers do anticipate and look forward to reading about a totally new world, so one can get away with it.

In conclusion, indirect exposition is the key to building an imaginative, creative and ever-expanding narrative which keeps the readers hooked.

All the best!


Authors' Tips - A to Z of Writing : Complete List

Authenticity in Writing : Adite Banerjie
A is for Anti-Heroes : Reet Singh
Authorpreneur : Devika Fernando
ABDCE Plotting Formula : Preethi Venugopala

Building a Routine, Backstories, Beta-readers and Backup : Preethi Venugopala
Blogging as an Author : Sudesna Ghosh
Balancing work, life and writing : Saiswaroopa Iyer
Background Work : Adite Banerjie
Burnout and Writer’s Block : Reet Singh
Backstory : Ruchi Singh

Cover Design : Sudesna Ghosh
Conflict, Character sketches & Climax : Preethi Venugopala
Coauthoring : Devika Fernando
Clich├ęs in Writing : Reet Singh
Crafting Stories : Adite Banerjie

C is for Community : Saiswaroopa

D is for Deus Ex Machina : Adite Banerjee
Dialogues, Drafts, Developments and Dictionaries : Preethi Venugopala

Dialogue Tags : Reet Singh

Epilogues : Devika Fernando
Exposition : Ruchi Singh

And more to come...