I tell my students that I want their stories to start out as normal "day in the life" explorations of the world they're writing about. I'd like to find a better way of saying that. I'm not looking for a technical writing term necessarily but a simple easy to understand description of a type of story introduction or even a state of being where nothing outrageous is happening, no conflict or big changes.

I've used the words innocuous, boring, and mundane in the past, but those have a negative feel to them and I have to re-explain that I still want the story introductions to be engaging, but no big changes right off the bat.

Appreciate any suggestions of words or short simple phrases that might help me out. Thanks.

  • 2
    The term is Slice Of Life comes to mind. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slice_of_life . However, it might not be an accessible term for all students. – R.S. Mar 23 '16 at 6:04
  • So you want them to write a feel-good story and it shouldn't have a cold opening. – NVZ Mar 23 '16 at 6:24
  • The challenge seems to be that "story" often indicates plot (a beginning, middle and end drawn around a tension/plot arc's establishment rise and resolution). What you are describing is a simple narrative. – rosends Mar 23 '16 at 10:51
  • Thanks @R.S., slice of life is exactly what I'm looking for. – mcmcmc Mar 23 '16 at 21:56
  • Happy to help. Hope the students' stories make for interesting read. The term is widely used in advertising as well ,and slice of life ads are very easy to identify. Maybe your can point that to your students. – R.S. Mar 24 '16 at 3:16

I posit Naturalistic

  1. derived from or closely imitating real life or nature.


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