To view this notification widget you need to have JavaScript enabled. This notification widget was easily created with NotifySnack.
Home Tour About Read What's New Help Forums Join Login
My Account
Shop
Save
Support
E
Book
Store
Learn
About
Jesus
  




The HOME for Christian writers!
The Home for Christian Writers!

Forums

This area is only a small portion of FaithWriters. The main site can be joined HERE.
Shop & Save to SUPPORT FaithWriters.
Upgrade to SUPPORT FaithWriters.

Use of first person?

If Fiction is your forte, this is the forum for you. This is the place to share information and get help on the road to writing the next great novel.

Moderators: itsjoanne, Sparrow, RedBaron

greyowl
Pencil 1 (1-49 Posts)
Pencil 1 (1-49 Posts)
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Jul 17, 2012 2:57 am

Use of first person?

Postby greyowl » Tue Jul 17, 2012 5:34 am

I'm a newbie at novel writing. I'm planning a historic novel set in Elba in the Late Antiquity about a boy growing up. He meets and befriends a hermit who teaches him a lot and leads him to faith in Jesus. He also meets an escaped slave-girl, whom he eventually marries. So the whole story revolves around these three characters, with the boy/young man in the center. Is it advisable to use the first person (He showed me... We had never seen that before...) :?: I read somewhere that that was rather deprecated.

User avatar
Shann
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 5712
Joined: Wed Jan 06, 2010 7:35 pm
Location: Western NY super rural

Re: Use of first person?

Postby Shann » Tue Jul 17, 2012 12:01 pm

As long as you are consistent about it you can write in first person. But remember that you can only show the reader what your MC would see and know. That's true in third person as well. Just to give you an example -- I walked along the path and bumped into a girl. She was surprised to see me and felt a tad frightened.
In that sentence how could the MC know what the girl was thinking or feeling. But something like this --I walked along the path. Hearing a crack I whirled around to see a young girl. She didn't move an inch. Her jaw flopped open and her black eyes darted between the woods and my face. I noticed a slight tremble in her hand.

In the second example, the reader sees what the MC sees and can come to the conclusion by her open jaw that she was surprised and the darting eyes and slight tremble shows she is a bit afraid.

Amy Wiley (Sparrow) has written a booklet about showing instead of telling. One of the things she covers is telling the story from different POV. Here is the link if you are interested. I think it is helpful and a great resource. She has worksheets at the end of each chapter to help you practice what she taught. It's available in e-books or in paperback. Here is the link if you're interested.

viewtopic.php?f=5&t=35546&p=505116#p505116
Shann

Shann's Profile

Sometimes God calms the storm; Sometimes He lets the storm rage and calms His child

greyowl
Pencil 1 (1-49 Posts)
Pencil 1 (1-49 Posts)
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Jul 17, 2012 2:57 am

Re: Use of first person?

Postby greyowl » Fri Jul 20, 2012 4:46 pm

Thanks, Shann

User avatar
RedBaron
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 24957
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2005 9:41 am
Location: Ohio

Re: Use of first person?

Postby RedBaron » Fri Jul 20, 2012 5:29 pm

When done well, I love reading things in 1st person :)
<><
Shari
FW 500 Member

"...hunt like a spider..." Cori - FW Con '07

User avatar
Deb Porter
FaithWriters and Site Admin
FaithWriters and Site Admin
 
Posts: 15781
Joined: Mon Nov 14, 2005 4:02 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: Use of first person?

Postby Deb Porter » Mon Jul 23, 2012 2:54 am

Also, it's best to avoid bumping them off. That doesn't bother everyone, but it will drive logical people nuts.

Love, Deb
FaithWriters' Writing Challenge Co-ordinator


Breath of Fresh Air Press - a little publisher with a lot of heart

Image

User avatar
Arpy
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
 
Posts: 211
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2012 11:58 am
Location: Rolfsburg, Roaldavia; AWOL

Re: Use of first person?

Postby Arpy » Mon Jul 23, 2012 12:46 pm

Deb Porter wrote:Also, it's best to avoid bumping them off. That doesn't bother everyone, but it will drive logical people nuts.

Love, Deb


I've always longed to do that!

A lot of my favourite books are in first person, and I think it's a wonderful Point of View. I tried using it myself, however, and didn't find it fitting. As a writer, I like to give the perspectives of many people in the story, and using only one restricted me too much. However, I hope to do it someday. (And kill him at the end.)
Arpy

I write adventures, historical fiction, war stories, fantasies, psychological and spy thrillers.

IN PROGRESS:
Snaga - fan fiction fantasy
Emira - action adventure
Confessions of an Evil Genius - psychological thriller
The Play-Actor - sci-fi, historical, psychological spy thriller
Dreamreader - YA psychological thriller
A fantasy without a title
RECENT DRAFTS:
Royal Opposition - action adventure

Kiwigirl
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 4056
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:20 pm

Re: Use of first person?

Postby Kiwigirl » Sat Jul 28, 2012 4:14 am

As an experienced 'bumper' I can tell you how to get the thrill without irking your readers:

1. Write the character well and truly into the story.
2. Decide he's useless and he has to go.
3. Kill him off (for your own personal satisfaction).
4. Remove all reference to his presence in the entire manuscript.
5. Complete manuscript and send to publisher.

You've had the thrill, see? And nobody needs to know!

Anyway, what were we talking about.... use of first person.... I think it's excellent when it's done well, but I also think it's one of the harder viewpoints to take. It's always good to start the story several times using different 'persons' on each short start so you get a good feel for the tone of the story.

User avatar
Arpy
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
Pencil 5 (200-299 Posts)
 
Posts: 211
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2012 11:58 am
Location: Rolfsburg, Roaldavia; AWOL

Re: Use of first person?

Postby Arpy » Sat Jul 28, 2012 12:28 pm

I've done that, Kiwigirl. It does work very well.
One thing I've noticed about Point of View is that often when I'm thinking back on particular books I've read, I will keep remembering the narrator saying 'I' when he didn't--he said 'he'. I only just figured out that this is a result of using a very subjective viewpoint--the character might as well be talking for himself. Found that interesting.
Arpy

I write adventures, historical fiction, war stories, fantasies, psychological and spy thrillers.

IN PROGRESS:
Snaga - fan fiction fantasy
Emira - action adventure
Confessions of an Evil Genius - psychological thriller
The Play-Actor - sci-fi, historical, psychological spy thriller
Dreamreader - YA psychological thriller
A fantasy without a title
RECENT DRAFTS:
Royal Opposition - action adventure

User avatar
jaybird
Pencil 6 (300-499 Posts)
Pencil 6 (300-499 Posts)
 
Posts: 475
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 6:22 pm
Location: Washington state

Re: Use of first person?

Postby jaybird » Sat Jul 28, 2012 5:35 pm

I'm revising my YA adult novel, and maybe it's ok the way it is--minus a few things to work on like the show n tell, and giving more feeling to the main character--but it was brought to my attention that the main character's (1st person) vocabulary is not that of a 10-year-old. Would his speech mature as he grows up in the story? I brainstormed this with Amy - had the idea to write it from the perspective of the character telling the story as a grown man. The latter seems to be the better choice. I'm thinking of a new hook - after some excitement the man tells a kid a story about his childhood.

Thoughts?
I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. Philippians 4:13

"Why sweat the small stuff when it's really not a big stink" - my quote

http://www.journalhome.com/ThingsToShare/

Kiwigirl
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 4056
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:20 pm

Re: Use of first person?

Postby Kiwigirl » Mon Jul 30, 2012 3:54 am

In my story, the bloke talks in short incomplete sentences to begin with. By the end he's talking in full sentences but that's because he's no longer nervous, and has become quite comfortable with himself. It's okay to morph if there's a reason for it.

User avatar
tonguethaid
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 1520
Joined: Fri Nov 09, 2007 4:37 pm
Location: Thailand

Re: Use of first person?

Postby tonguethaid » Sun Aug 05, 2012 4:20 pm

I have read a few first person novels and there is definitely a different feel to it. The Hunger Games for instance is written in first person. Wouldnt be my first choice but I think it can work well in the right setting.

It presents a challenge if there will be lots of action in your story and if you ever want to switch viewpoints that wouldnt work. I'd say if you're toying with it- might as well give it a try!
♥Kara

“The true harvest of my life is intangible - a little star dust caught, a portion of the rainbow I have clutched” ~ Henry David Thoreau

"If you are a dreamer,come in. If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar, a hoper, a prayer, a magic-bean-buyer. If you're a pretender, come sit by my fire, for we have some flax-golden tales to spin. Come in! Come in!" ~ Shel Silverstein

User avatar
Sparrow
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 13538
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2005 11:00 am
Location: Washington State

Re: Use of first person?

Postby Sparrow » Mon Aug 06, 2012 12:05 am

I've chosen to write both of my first novels in first person. I wanted the more intimate feel of getting deep into their thoughts. You can do that with 3rd person, of course, too.

Honestly, part of the reason I chose to do my second novel in 1st person was purely from a logistics standpoint. My main character is a female who gets custody of an unresponsive little girl who doesn't have a name in the first several chapters. By writing in 1st person I could avoid the multiple "she"s that didn't have a name to help identify who all the pronouns belonged to.
Amy Michelle Wiley
Check out my booklet, Bring Your Writing to Life: a writer's guide to "show; don't tell". Buy it here.
My Website, Sparrow's Flight

User avatar
jostrick
Pencil 2 (50-99 Posts)
Pencil 2 (50-99 Posts)
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Sat Apr 10, 2010 8:28 pm
Location: Vancouver, Washington State

Re: Use of first person?

Postby jostrick » Fri Aug 17, 2012 11:12 pm

jaybird wrote:I'm revising my YA adult novel, and maybe it's ok the way it is--minus a few things to work on like the show n tell, and giving more feeling to the main character--but it was brought to my attention that the main character's (1st person) vocabulary is not that of a 10-year-old. Would his speech mature as he grows up in the story? I brainstormed this with Amy - had the idea to write it from the perspective of the character telling the story as a grown man. The latter seems to be the better choice. I'm thinking of a new hook - after some excitement the man tells a kid a story about his childhood.

Thoughts?


I think it is a great idea to write it from the viewpoint as a grown man. An idea would be to skip the telling a kid a story and go straight into telling the story--as reminiscience, so it naturally would have a mix of the narrator's present, reliving his past. Perhaps this method would give you some alternative ways to express your ideas; some things might work better in the present, than in the past. The audience would be your readers.

Glad I found this fiction forum...my questions will probably be coming soon :-). working on suspense now...don't see any questions regarding suspense yet, hope some of you have done/are working on simular items :-)
Joanna Stricker

User avatar
DearGod:WithLove
Pencil 3 (100-149 Posts)
Pencil 3 (100-149 Posts)
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2011 4:59 pm

Re: Use of first person?

Postby DearGod:WithLove » Sun Aug 19, 2012 5:08 pm

I'm so glad this question came up! So thank you for asking.

I merely came into the forum to see the answers myself! Shann - as always...amazing gift that allows you to explain so easily with examples. Thanks!

And, I didn't know about Amy's book! I am going to look into it. THANKS AMY!!!!!!!!!



God Bless,

Camille~
Psalm 119:105 ( KJV) "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path."

I love you Lord...Blessed is your name~

User avatar
Sparrow
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 13538
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2005 11:00 am
Location: Washington State

Re: Use of first person?

Postby Sparrow » Mon Sep 03, 2012 11:04 pm

Sure. :) Hope it's helpful!
Amy Michelle Wiley
Check out my booklet, Bring Your Writing to Life: a writer's guide to "show; don't tell". Buy it here.
My Website, Sparrow's Flight

Next

Return to Fiction Forum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests


© MeasurelessMedia. All rights reservedTerms of Service



Jesus - True for You But not for Me      Website Builder     Build Website     Is Jesus God?    
Does God exist?     Build a writers website     Does truth exist?     Website online in minutes