1. YourselfOrSomeoneLikeYou
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    YourselfOrSomeoneLikeYou New Member

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    Whats it called when...

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by YourselfOrSomeoneLikeYou, Aug 19, 2008.

    is there a word for when something (seemingly unimportant) from earlier in a book/movie is brought back later on in it? It seems like theres a word i'm thinking of and its on the tip of my tongue but i'm drawing a blank
     
  2. Still Life
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    Still Life Active Member

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    Foreshadow?

    Not exactly sure.
     
  3. Kratos
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    Kratos Contributing Member

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    I think its something like Chevkov's Gun or something...
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Foreshadowing is thge word I was going to come up with. From the perspective of the later references you could also call it reprising a theme.
     
  5. TheFedoraPirate
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    TheFedoraPirate Contributing Member

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    @Kratos - It's "Chekhov's" gun.

    @OP - Dunno if that's what you're looking for but a Chekhov's gun is the principle that if you bother mentioning a rifle on the mantle in Act 1; someone damn well better have fired that rifle by Act 3.

    Also known as the "Law of Conservation of Detail".
     
  6. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Whatever happened to misdirection? The gun may have served its purpose in the mention of its existence. A dark cloud of potential violence may be more powerful than the act itself. Firing the gun would release the tendion embodied in the implied threat.
     
  7. Palimpsest
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    Palimpsest Senior Member

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    You mean like a motif? Or something less symbolic, more important to the plot... in which case it's also at the tip of my tongue :p

    Edited to add: It wasn't a specific term like Chekov's Gun, but I've looked it up and it sounds perfect for the definition.
     
  8. Crazy Ivan
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    Crazy Ivan Contributing Member

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    Also the Macguffin!
     
  9. Leo
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    Leo Senior Member

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    In my latest story there is a gun which is never fired, but has a tendency to fire accidently, and in the end kills someone without being fired.

    But I've tried to make the reader expect that someone will shoot someone else.
     

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