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Tell Tale Heart

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Seeking Intensity

Who hasn’t at one time been entertained by the details of a good thriller? Edgar Allen Poe, is an ideal example of one who has authored a number of intense short stories.

Poe’s “Tell Tale Heart” is a gripping story that will keep the reader on the edge of his/her seat. He is able to create this intense effect in the way he strategically uses the elements needed for a short story. In this particular short story the author’s use of diction, setting, and a narrators point of view are what help give this story its intensity.

Diction is the choice or use of words. It plays a major role in making this story so intense. All through out the Tell Tale Heart Poe used metaphors and similes which really help a reader to visualize what is being read. A good example of a simile from this short story was quite easy to find. Close attention to the wording in this quote describe how well the reader can imagine the exact scene Poe has created. “When I had waited a long time, very patiently, without hearing him lie down, I resolved to open -a very, very little crevice in the lantern. So I opened it- you cannot imagine how stealthily- until, at length, a single dim ray, like the thread of the spider, shot from out the crevice and full upon the vulture eye.”

The setting is what in most cases sets the atmosphere or in other words the mood of a story. “The Tell Tale Heart” takes place in an old creaky house with wood planks for its flooring. Most of this tale takes place at night, with its most intense moments right at

midnight. A person might even be able to guess this is a bit of a spooky read by merely being told these few details about the setting. That being stated, it is easy to see how time and place can influence a story.

The element that makes this story so very unique is its narrator point of you. It seems as though the narrator

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