Different types of war fiction include various formats in which works can be written as well as stories that cover a wide range of topics. Many works of fiction are written about a particular conflict, such as World War II or the American Civil War, while others are written about combat in general. There are also pieces of war fiction that are written about a fantastical battle, such as one set in a fantasy or science fiction setting. Fictional representations of strife can include a number of different formats, such as poems and plays, as well as short stories and novels.
War fiction generally refers to any written work about warfare, or in which a battle is the major setting, that is not a true story. Some of the most common and popular works within this genre are written about a real and specific event, but tell a tale that may not have necessarily happened. In these stories, the battle is often the backdrop for events, such as a particularly character-driven story unfolding amidst the chaos and drama of a battlefield. Specific conflicts are often preferred for this type of war fiction, such as one of the World Wars or the Trojan War.
There are also many pieces of war fiction that are written about a conflict that never happened, or about combat in a highly fictional setting. This could be a piece of speculative fiction about strife between American and Canada, or a doomsday scenario involving a conflict between every country in the world. More fantastical settings can also be used for such war fiction, such as a fantasy world inhabited by mythological creatures or a battle between humans and an alien species. In these types of stories, the fictional conflict may be just as important a feature as the characters themselves, who are often revealed through the trials they undergo.
Although a great deal of war fiction is written in standard prose form, there are also other formats that can be used by writers to tell stories about conflict. Poetry may not be the first method many people would use to relay stories of strife, but it can have a powerful impact on a work. The sparse nature of many poems can be used to provide fast and intense details about a battlefield or the nature of war. Plays can also be used as a vehicle for war fiction, and character-driven works often require a dramatic setting, such as a time of conflict.