Author*s Craft - Laing Middle School

Author’s Craft
Tone is the author’s attitude toward a subject.
The tone of a written work may be one of anger,
sarcasm, humor, sadness, or excitement.
“Kay tore open the envelope and quickly
scanned the letter. Congratulations! The
word leapt off the page as if it were
written in bright lights.”
The words tore open, quickly, leapt off, and
bright lights create a tone of excitement.
Imagery is the use of descriptive words that
appeal to the five senses (sight, smell, hearing,
touch, and taste) and create a picture in the
reader’s mind.
“His silk shirt, soaked in perspiration, clung to his
body like a wet napkin.”
Flashback is when the present action in a story
is paused to describe an earlier event.
For example, a character named Leah refuses to
help an old friend who comes knocking at her
door. In a flashback, Leah relives a night long
ago when this friend betrayed her.
Foreshadowing is a clue about what is going to
happen in a story.
For example, on his way to explore a deserted
gold mine, Ben reads a magazine article about a
ghost said to haunt the mine. Later in the story,
Ben finds himself face-to-face with the ghost.
Symbolism is the use of a concrete object to
represent an abstract idea.
Authors may use a dove as a symbol for peace;
clouds or rain as a symbol of sadness; a seedling
as a symbol for hope.
Verbal Irony
Verbal Irony is the use of language that
expresses the opposite of what a character or
narrator really means.
For example: “There is nothing like getting eaten
up by mosquitoes to make a camping trip
Situational Irony
Situational Irony is when the expected result of
a situation is different from the actual result.
For example, a boy who was terrible in science
and math grows up to become an astronaut.
Dramatic Irony
Dramatic Irony is when the audience has
information that a character does not, and this
lack of knowledge affects the character’s
For example, a character crosses a room to
escape through an open door at the far end, but
the audience knows there is a trapdoor in the
middle of the floor.