At first we can think the main difference between a novel and a short story is the length. Indeed, while there are less than fifty pages in a short story, thenovel is not limited (usually more than one hundred and fifty pages). Nevertheless, when we compare them carefully, it seems clear that there are also differences inthe composition and the style of these narrative forms.
Concerning the composition, we can mention first the characters. On the one hand, in a novel, the authortakes time to present the actors of the narration, though physical and psychological descriptions. On the other hand, these characters aren’t so numerous and theirfeatures are less developed in a short story.
The atmospheres are also different. While context is described precisely in a novel, it is not the case concerningthe short stories. All those details mustn’t be showed in them, so that the reader can use his imagination. It’s too a way for the author to concentrate attention onthe events themselves.
Furthermore the story is also a proof of this dissimilarity. In a short story, the plot is often simple and unique while the one of thenovel can be multiple and include new developments. The end of the story is too revealing : short stories have never moral and sometimes not clear end at all.Logically this disparity is translated by the writing style of the authors: more or less descriptions in novels, ellipsis in short stories…
Finally we canconclude that, contrary to appearances important, the most important difference between short stories and novels isn’t the length but the depth of the story they tell.
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