1. Alesia
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    Alesia Pen names: AJ Connor, Carey Connolly Contributor

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    3rd person to 1st person and back transitions?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Alesia, Mar 23, 2013.

    I've been having trouble getting through the first part of my story and something finally clicked tonight. I'm thinking roughly want to start off with the main character being interviewed about their life in third person, then the next 3-4 chapters is them telling their story in 1st person up until they met the interviewer, then swap back to 3rd person for the rest of the story but I'm unclear on the proper way to transition perspectives. Any ideas?
     
  2. DeathandGrim
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    DeathandGrim Contributing Member

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    I'm pretty sure you can just switch the POV when you need it. Just make sure it's clear why the POV changed.
     
  3. AVCortez
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    AVCortez Active Member

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    And separate it by chapters otherwise the change in perspective will be jarring to the reader.
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Generally it;s better to stick to all third, or all ONE first person. But that doesn't mean you can't jump between first and third, just that it's harder to do well.
     
  5. Alesia
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    Alesia Pen names: AJ Connor, Carey Connolly Contributor

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    So since the beginning chunk is very short (1-2 paragraphs) should that be listed more as a forward then? And start chapter 1 in the first person?
     
  6. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    That would be a prologue, not a foreword (note spelling). And prologues are not usually a good idea, even though they are often used. Better to cut it out entirely. Yoy could put it back in later if you still believe it enhances the story, but you are nearly always better off getting right into the story.
     
  7. Phoenix Hikari
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    Phoenix Hikari Contributing Member

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    A good example for you to check is 'The Kingkiller chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss or at least the first book 'The Name of the Wind'. He starts with third person and then when the MC starts telling his story, he switches to first person.
     
  8. ChaosReigns
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    ChaosReigns Be Still and Know Contributor

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    im trying the idea of going between first and third, but im using the two sides of schizophrenia to make it work, and splitting it between sections (which i generally separate with a line of asterisk's or chapters) its not an easy thing to write, but if you write the first as one lot, and the third as one lot, you might be able to piece them together like that, which is how i did it for when i was merging flashbacks with the main story, wrote both as separate instances and put them together in a logical fashion, it may also pay to have someone read over it to see if it makes sense too
     
  9. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    What's better is what fits the story. Lot's of stories start with a person relating an account that the author then takes the reader into the account directly. I see no reason it's "better" not to do this.
     
  10. SuperVenom
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    SuperVenom Contributing Member

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    Why not keep the MC in first perason from the start and have him/her recounting to a 2nd party, almost as a sidestep of a narration. Then in the later chapters treat it as a flash back of some sort, that way you might spare any akward transactions.
     

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