What did I say? ch3 needs 1k? It's easy to write? Wrong, on both fronts. Because I just discovered that a war can be written from different narrative distances. Maybe I'm slow. Wouldn't be the first time. The War. So far I see two ways of telling about war and they are not categories per-se but only a gut-feeling. I don't know if I'm expressing myself well, but if not I'd like one of you put it down in words better. Be my guests. But for some reason, there are no 'how-to-write-about-war' manuals out there. *irony off* ETA: I've found one, which sums a few things up quite well: http://doughboycafe.deviantart.com/art/On-Writing-the-War-A-Guide-to-Military-Fiction-322539034 Anyway: My particular insight, walking to work this morning. So: The. War. WAR takes the role of stage-director, looming and orchestrating all events just by it being 'WAR'. Cause and effect in itself, characters react to violence and get gobbled up by it. Personal choices are there, but they are not the focus of this way of portraying war, they are insignificant and don't change the outcome. War takes the role of the narrator, never mind who the formal POV is. @zoupskim : Do you recognise this description? I salute you! WAR is up-close and personal. The POV character is part of the war, but the war is equally part of the POV character. You're as much cause as effect to the war, as vice versa. IEDs have been planted by other people, but it's your choice to recognise the piece of wire sticking out of the rubble, or the cell phone in the hand of this guy over there. Or what to do with this knowledge. But despite everything you do, you won't change the outcome. War is not the narrator. YOU are. You are showing your personal war. So much for theory. Ultimately, the war as an 'entity' is the same for both ways of telling about it, and no one way to write about it is better. Both ways of telling emphasize different aspects, but war is ugly, no way around. How to tell this truth is your choice as an author, it's about what you want to leave the reader with. But you'd better think about the narrative distance reader <-> war, before you dip your toes in. For me, I want to write the second way. On the narrative-level, there's a world of difference in just which events I need to choose to 'how' to show/tell.