Short story analysisGeneral Questions for the Analysis & Evaluation of Short StoriesPLOT1.
Who is the Protagonist of the story? What are the conflicts? Are they physical, intellectual,moral or emotional? Is the main conflict between good and evil sharply differentiated, or is itmore subtle and complex?
Does the plot have unity? Are all the episodes relevant to the total meaning or effect of thestory? Doeseach incident grow logically out of the preceding incident and lead naturally to the next? Is theending happy,unhappy, or undetermined? Is it fairly achieved?
What use does the story make of chance and coincidence? Are these occurrences used toinitiate, tocomplicate, or to resolve the story? How improbable are they?
How is the suspense created in the story? Is the interest confined to examples of mystery? Of dilemma?
What use does the story make of surprise? Are the surprises achieved fairly? Do they serve asignificantpurpose? Do they divert the reader’s attention from weakness in the story?
To what extent is this a “formula” story?
What means does the author use to reveal characters? Are the characters sufficientlydramatized? What useis made of character contrast?
Are the characters consistent in their actions? adequately motivated? plausible? Does theauthorsuccessfully avoid stock characters?
Is each character developed enough to justify his role in the story? Are the main charactersround or flat?
Are any of the characters a developing character? If so, is his/her change a large or small one?Is it aplausible change for him/her? Is he/she sufficiently motivated? Is she/he given sufficient time?
Does the story have a theme? What is it? Is it implicit or explicit?
Does the theme reinforce or oppose popular notions of life? Does it furnish a new insight orrefresh ordeepen an old one?
POINT OF VIEW1.
What point of view does the story use? Is it consistent in its use of this point of view? If shiftsare made, arethey justified?
What are the advantages of the chosen point of view? Does it furnish any clues as to thepurpose of the