by Kristina ~
Components a good chapter contains:
| I have used North and South by John Jakes, chapter 1, "Orry" as an example.
This chapter has approximately 2696 words in it. I found 1118 words that dealt with these seven components.
1. Backstory: 140 words - 5%
2. Character Development: 123 words - 5%
3. Scene setting: 185 words - 7%
4. Exposition that moves the story: 233 words - 9%
5. Dialogue that moves the story: 361 words - 13%
6. Foreshadowing: 61 words - 2%
7. Symbolism: 15 words - 1%
Backstory: "I have this picture, you see—"... "What kind of picture?' Southerners are people who eat pork and collards, fight with knives, and abuse their niggers"...I have a picture of a Yankee too."...A Yankee's always ready to invent some new thingamajig or to outwit his neighbor in court....wants to sell you jackknives or tin ware, but what he likes best is skinning you...He fell silent, giving in at last to the anxiety that had been growing in him ever since he left home. His family would be staying on in the city, his father to transact some business, others to enjoy the restaurants, museums, and theaters—while he traveled toward an uncertain future. A lonely one, too. Even if he survived the rigorous disciplines of the Academy, it would be two years before he saw Lehigh Station again.
Character Development: Orry Main was sixteen and stood almost six feet two inches. His slimness accentuated his height and lent him a certain grace when he moved. He had a long, plain face with good color of someone who spent a lot of time in the sunshine. His nose was narrow and aristocratic, his wavy hair brown. His eyes, brown too, were rather deeply set. Fatigue circles tended to appear under them whenever he slept poorly, as he had last night. The rings of shadow gave his face a melancholy cast. But he was not melancholy by disposition. His smile, which appeared frequently, proved that. He was, however, a deliberate sort. He tended to pause and think before taking any important step.
Scene Setting: A few moments ago the driver of the Astor House passenger omnibus had thrown the travel-battered trunk down at the head of the pier. Orry had picked it up by the one rope handle still unbroken and had dragged it scarcely three feet before the stevedore stepped between him and the gangway. It was a brilliant, windless morning in June 1842. Orry already nervous about the day ahead. The stevedore's fixed smile and hard stare only worsened that state, as did the stevedore's two associates....Soon the steamer was backing from its berth. The family waved from the pier. They dropped out of sight as the boat headed upstream....The paddles churned the sunlit water. New York's piers and buildings disappeared astern.....As the steamer moved against the current, the palisades rose on either hand, green with summer leaves. There was no sign of human habitation on the bluffs. The vessel was carrying them into a wilderness. For that reason George welcomed the company of someone else fated to suffer the same uncertainties and, unless he guessed wrong, the same fears of what lay ahead.
Exposition that moves the story: Orry was perspiring from tension as well as from the heat. He bent at the waist, again reaching for the trunk. "I refuse to pay a—" The first stevedore pushed him. "Then the trunk stays here." A grave look concealed Orry's fear. "Sir, don't put hands on me again." The words provoked the stevedore to do exactly that. He tried to give Orry a clumsy shake. Orry had planned his point of attack and rammed his right fist into the stevedore's stomach.
The official cried, "Stop that," and started forward. Another stevedore flung him back so hard he nearly pitched off the pier into the pier into the water.
The first stevedore grabbed Orry's ears and twisted. Then he kneed Orry's groin. Orry reeled away, falling against someone who had come up behind him, someone who darted around him and charged the three stevedores, fists swinging.
A young man not much older than himself, Orry saw as he lunged back to the fray.....
"I thank you very much for your assistance sir." Orry's politeness helped hide his nervousness in the presence of Yankees—and patently prosperous ones, at that.
The stocky young man grinned. "We almost had 'em whipped."
Orry smiled too. The newcomer stood just about to his shoulder.....Whether we won or lost, all of you helped out of a tight spot. My thanks again.
Dialog that moves the story:"Like some help loading that aboard, young sir?"
"Lad I asked—
"I heard you, sir, I can handle the trunk myself."
"Listen to that," one of the other stevedores jeered. "Where you from, country boy?" It was Orry's accent that gave him away; his clothes were far from countrified. "South Carolina."....
"No you don't. Either we put it on the steamer or you travel up to West Point without it."....
"How much to load it?"....
"That's about eight times more than it should be."...."Could be, sojer boy. But that's the price."
"You don't like it," the second stevedore said, " go complain to the mayor. Go complain to Brother Jonathan.
"I'll give you a hand with that trunk," George said. "You are taking this boat, aren't you?"
"Yes to the Military Academy."
"Just get your appointment this year?"
Orry nodded. "Two months ago."
"Fancy that," George said, grinning again. "So did I."....
The other young man held out his hand. "Name's George Hazard. I'm from Pennsylvania. A little town you've never heard of—Lehigh Station."
"Orry Main. From Saint George's Parish, South Carolina." They looked at each other as their hands clasped. Orry had a feeling this pugnacious little Yankee was going to be his friend. ....
"Since Stanley is the oldest male, he's going to take over the iron-works," George explained as he and Orry carried the trunk onto the steamer. ...
Iron, you said?"
"Yes. Our family's been making it for six generations. The company used to be called Hazard Furnace, but my father changed the name to Hazard Iron." ....
Miss Virgilia Hazard said, "Would you be kind enough to repeat your first name, Mr. Main?"
"Orry,"....He explained that his forefather were early settlers of South Carolina....
Virgilia's eyes challenged him. "Might I ask the nature of your family's business?"
Instantly he felt defensive....
"They own a rice plantation, ma'am. Rather large and considered prosperous."....
:Then I presume you also own slaves?"....
"Yes ma'am, more than a hundred and fifty. You can't grow rice without them."
"as long as the South perpetuates Negro slavery, Mr Main, the region will remain backward."
Foreshadowing: They looked each other as their hands clasped. Orry had the feeling this pugnacious little Yankee was going to be his friend. .... The vessel was carrying them into a wilderness. For that reason George welcomed the company of someone else fated to suffer the same uncertainties and, unless he guessed wrong, the same fears of what lay ahead.
Symbolism: Brother Jonathan was the popular symbol for the nation. A rustic, a Yankee.