A short story which I have read which is engaging and which also highlights issues is ‘Tinsel’ by Alan Spence. ‘Tinsel’ is a sparkly, shiny decoration which is normally associated with Christmas and celebration. This meant that I would expect the story to be about a happy, content and jolly celebration at Christmas time. However, when I read it I was surprised as it was about a young boy and how his imagination runs wild. It is also about poverty and illness but is contrasted by the loving family relationship.
At first the story was unusual because nothing really happened but as I read on I realised the pattern of the story and the point of it. It was a very unexpected story line. There was no real plot or action but as I studied I came to appreciate the writers' techniques as he tried to highlight his thought provoking theme.
The writer uses privileged third person narrative point of view, which creates a credible main character, the boy. The author makes us aware of how the boy sees the world by letting us into his thoughts. This is done by the use of sense words. An example of this is when he hears “people queuing complained about the cold”. This lets us know what the boy is hearing. I also became aware of how the boys mind works which is an associationist way of thinking. An associationist is when the mind jumps from one thing to another depending on what the mind associates it with. Another term for this is stream of concious .
Another technique to add to the story’s credibility is a realistic setting. He does this by mentioning the place names such as “Govan Road” and “Ibrox”. He also mentions historical detail such as the “washhouse”, “Outside toilet” and “the old tenements”. Further more he uses dialogue which is colloquial in Glasgow. This makes the setting more realistic as it is a real place and uses dialogue which is still commonly used in Glasgow.
This story has two minor characters, the boys’ parents. They seem to be the...