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Action

The scene description, character movement, and sounds as described in a screenplay.

"Action is the mode fiction writers use to show what is happening at any given moment in the story," states Evan Marshall, who identifies five fiction-writing modes: action, summary, dialogue, feelings/thoughts, and background. Jessica Page Morrell lists six delivery modes for fiction-writing: action, exposition, description, dialogue, summary, and transition. Peter Selgin refers to methods, including action, dialogue, thoughts, summary, scene, and description.

While the dialogue is the element that brings a story and its characters to life on the page, and the narrative gives the story its depth and substance, action creates the movement within a story. Writing a story means weaving all of the elements of fiction together. When it is done right, weaving dialogue, narrative, and action can create a beautiful tapestry. A scene top-heavy with action can feel unreal because it is likely that characters doing something—anything at all—would be talking during the activity.

Key Terms

action
characters
definition
description
dialogue
mode fiction writers
moment
scene
story
usage

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Acronymn

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Synonymns

Action
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Sources & Credits

Last modified on November 25 2019
Content adapted from Wikipedia
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