Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by elkabong62, Dec 5, 2011.
Would it be considered OK to write a novel in the first person and third person combined?
Yes, this has been done a number of times before. Just do it well
It depends. Will this serve your story well? Why do you want to write in first and third, wouldn't it be easy just to stick with one P.O.V? Writing in two different P.O.V's has it challenges, but I think the most important aspect to consider is its affects on potential readers. Swapping from one to other, if not done clearly, could become quite confusing and also damage your story. Maybe do a few test pages and see how it goes. I'm not saying you can't do it, but I really suggest you think about its impacts on your story and reader before you get too serious.
I hope that helps
This. You can do whatever the hell you like, if you do it well.
Outvoted by the pros, just ignore my comment
I think your points are good. Those are the sorts of considerations that impact whether it is done well
Thanks Steerpike. I actually thought I was going to be the first replier, but you beat me by like a minute. It's 'cause I spent so long thinking about my response lol.
PS: Your display pic made me laugh so hard when I first saw it
It can be done. I remember an example of it in A Tale of Two Cities, but I don't know if it could be classified as "well done" or not. I'm not a scholar :/ but like everyone else said, if you do it right and your story is better for it, then go for it.
Barry Eisler's John Rain books are like that, protag in first, other chapters in third.
I've tried this, and I find it weird and confusing. A few authors I read do this at times, and I don't like it. It's just a preference. Also, when it switches to the third person, I wonder if the person who has been in first person has knowledge of the things in the "other" story. It surprises me when it's done, and like I said, I prefer consistency. Just me though.
In the novel I'm currently writing, there is going to be a part where the two MCs are on a plane traveling from the US to the UK, and in that time, one of the characters recounts the story of his past to the other. It's pretty vital to the overall story and is probably going to comprise about 6 or 7 chapters. To me, it seemed reasonable to do this part in first person despite the rest of the novel being in third. To do otherwise would entail having to use quotes within quotes for dialogue, which I've always found distracting.
Separate names with a comma.