Time in Storytelling

In our lives—as well as in the books we read—there are some moments feel like they last forever, while there are others that just fly by. Time can feel intrinsically slow or fast, depending on what is happening in that moment. Deep emotion or memory can often evoke a sense of slowness, whereas an action-packed moment can create a feeling of speed.

These “rules” that we understand intuitively can manifest in different ways in literature: One writer may spend pages and pages on a single moment of reflection, while another might choose to encapsulate an entire winter in a single sentence. The trick for us, as writers, is to find the right approach for each passage that we write.

Read more about “Narrative Time” and “Story Time” or check out a few books and articles on the subject.

AXIS

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