By Mike Klaassen
- Description is the mode for portraying people, places, things, or concepts.
- Action is the mode for showing things happening, in detail, as they occur.
- Narration is the mode by which the narrator communicates directly to the reader.
- Conversation (dialogue) is the mode for presenting characters talking.
- Emotion is the mode for relating how a character feels.
- Sensation is the mode for evoking the five senses (sight, hearing, touch, smell, and taste).
- Introspection is the mode for sharing a character’s thinking.
- Summarization is the mode of restating actions or events.
- Transition is the mode for moving from one place, time, or character to another.
- Exposition is the mode for conveying information.
- Recollection is the mode for revealing what a character remembers.
Choices of when, where, and how to utilize these modes are a significant component of a writer’s style.
Mike Klaassen is the author of Fiction-Writing Modes: Eleven Essential Tools for Bringing Your Story to Life, which is available for order at traditional and online bookstores. You may “Look Inside” the book at Amazon.com.
This article was adapted from an excerpt of Fiction-Writing Modes: Eleven Essential Tools for Bringing Your Story to Life by Mike Klaassen. Copyright 2015 and 2022. Michael John Klaassen. All rights reserved. You are welcome to share this article with others.