1. CMastah
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    CMastah Active Member

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    Second story in 1st person

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by CMastah, Apr 15, 2015.

    So here's the thing:

    My first book is in third person, but tackling third person is harder than I thought. Now that I've finished it, I've been meaning to switch to 1st person for my second book onwards, what do you guys think? Has this been done before?
     
  2. carsun1000
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    carsun1000 Active Member

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    First person is nice if you are comfortable with it, meaning if you know how to use it without actually filling your book with bunch "I"s. Third person, most authors find easier to use. I personally prefer the third person because you have several replacements for that third person character. I guess it' s all about how you can use either, and if it benefits your story to be told from that POV. If you are toying with the same characters from your first book, you might want to think about consistency. But then, it' s your work, you can use any person you want. Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2015
  3. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Hard to say. You could be a good writer who knows how to use first person without filling your paragraphs up with I did this, I did that and filter words but the fact that you're having a hard time with third has me wondering.
    What is the problem with third that you're having?
     
  4. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    This comes up a lot, and I really think a lot of novice writers overthink this.

    There are advantages and disadvantages to 1st person. It's a good choice if you want to provide a very limited view, and especially if you want an unreliable narrator. An example of this is if you want to be able to spring something on the reader late in the story what a more detached narrator would know and would have no reason to withhold from the reader. Or, in one of my tabled projects, I was using a 1st person narrator who presented a far more noble version of himself than was warranted and only later did the reader see his true colors. But understand that if you choose 1st person, you are pretty much stuck in that one character's POV for the duration (NB. it is possible to present more than one character, each in his/her own 1st person narrative, but if you do so, you have to make sure the narrative voices are distinctly different - Elizabeth Kostova was criticized for her failure to do so in The Swan Thieves).

    As it happens, much of what one seeks in using 1st person can be achieved in 3rd person limited, so you can always use that. And, it has the advantage of allowing you the flexibility to easily switch POVs.

    My advice would be to use 1st person if you feel you can best serve your story, and 3rd person if that works best. Either way, if you get into the project and decide that your chosen method isn't working, you can always change it.
     
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  5. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    Are these two books in the same series, or two totally separate books?

    If they're in the same series, I'd be hesitant about switching POVs. You generally want to keep a similar voice and style from one book to the next in a series, and changing POV would mess with that.

    If they're totally separate? Sure, why not? Play around, experiment, see what works!
     
  6. CMastah
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    CMastah Active Member

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    They are actually two books in the same series, I was worried about putting the reader off.

    The thing is, is that I've seen third person done REALLY well where you may as well be in the guy's head, but I doubt I'm pulling it off well. I'd still avoid overusing 'I' as well. I'm having trouble with 3rd person where I want to say something, and I want the reader to know that it's the opinion/knowledge of the MC instead of sticking it in as fact that might be unknown to the MC (or perhaps I'm overthinking this). I want to mention details of a place/character in the MC's dreamy opinion without...well....I don't want to make it sound like the opinion of the author, I want it to be clearly the MC's opinion. If I state something in 1st person, it's clear that it's the character's opinion, but with 3rd I'm worried it'll sound like the author's instead.
     
  7. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    It's fine. Lee Child, a bestselling author of something like 20 books now (I don't know how many are in his Jack Reacher series - a lot anyway) and the first book in his Reacher series was written in 1st person. I think subsequent books were all written in 3rd person limited. But if I remember correctly there may have been 1 or 2 books or novellas that reverted back to first person, though this one I'm not sure about.

    In any case, I don't really see the problem as long as you write it well.
     

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