What is prose? Prose is what follows the natural flow of grammatical or spoken language. It can be verbal or written. For creative writing, we’ll discuss the types of writing prose. Keep reading to learn more about written prose.
What Does Prose Mean?
“Prose” comes from the Latin term prosa oratio. It means “straightforward.” This term is often used within general literary terms, but there’s more to it.
Prose definition is a type of writing style when written. It follows a grammatical structure to arrange phrases into sentences into paragraphs, forming a concept or idea for the reader.
It’s not as simple as writing down your thoughts and having your reader get something out of it. Prose helps you identify types of writing styles and determine which works best for you and your written project.
Different Types Of Prose
Since we’re discussing creative writing, let’s review prose form in literature.
Nonfiction is based on actual events or a recount of factual evidence of an event. Nonfictional prose includes work such as newspaper articles, textbooks, autobiographies, biographies, and instruction manuals, to name a few.
Fictional prose is a fiction work, meaning it’s not based on actual events. This type of prose is seen in novels, novellas, short stories, and the like. A fiction story typically focuses on characters, plot, and setting and contains dialogue.
Not to be confused with the hero story arc in most fiction work, heroic prose is another type of storytelling. This prose is often seen in legends, fables, and myths.
Finally, there’s poetry prose, a hybrid between prose and poetry. Poetry may follow rhyme and metric structures. It also has intentional line breaks and stanzas. On the other hand, prose follows more format through sentences and paragraphs.
So, prose poetry combines the two creating one prose piece. A prose poem often reads like a poem but is written in paragraphs.
What Is The Purpose Of Prose?
The major idea behind prose is to tell a story, pass along information, or share an idea. These things can be done in many forms of prose that will inform the reader and entertain them.
For example, all of that can be done in fictional prose through characters, setting, plot, conflict, and a satisfying resolution.
Prose also helps you find your voice. Your prose may be persuasive, conversational, or anything in between. Your voice will help you convey what you need the reader to get out of your written work.
Finally, prose will help you determine a mood. When your readers finish reading your piece, how do you want them to feel? Should they be inspired? Feel bittersweet? Feel educated on something new?
The prose you choose to write your piece will help give your readers a better understanding of what you’re telling them.
Prose Is Direct Communication Between You And Your Readers
Overall, prose is an ideal way to communicate with your readers. You can teach them something new, inspire them, or entertain them. Prose can also help you find your voice when writing. Practice, and you’ll soon enough find your tone.
Rachel Poli is an indie author, podcaster, and content writer working on her debut cozy mystery novel.
Although she favors mystery, Rachel is a multi-genre author with too many ideas and characters in her head, often experimenting with short stories and flash fiction.
When she’s not writing, she’s reading, organizing something, or playing video games. She currently resides in New England with her zoo.