The “I’s” Have It

I’m not sure why I feel so reluctant to write stories froma first-person perspective. There’s nothing wrong with it, of course. I think that my use of the third-person is probably due to the fact that most of the books I read are in the third-person. Not sure why. I think it’s just a coincidence.

But something about this story told me that it needed to be written in the first-person. I could hear this character’s voice pretty clearly and it just didn’t feel right to start writing… Blah, blah, blah, he thought. I tried–it didn’t work. Plus, if I used the third-person, I would immediately have to reveal a little too much about the identity of the narrator. With the first-person, this can be put off a little bit to add suspense. In the case of my current story, the narrator is someone who is living under an assumed name, trying to get on with their life, when a few things from the past come flying back in. Their identity is an important part of the story–not the main part and certainly not something that I’ll save until the end to reveal–but it gives the story a little bit more of an initial hook if the reader is left wondering why all of this weirdness is happening and why this guy seems so matter-of-fact about it.

So here I am writing lots of “I’s” and actually getting to say things. It’s odd, but somehow I seem to feel more comfortable writing in the first-person. I think the only reason I have been shying away from it while working on this current novel is that I intend to change perspectives occasionally and was afraid that this might confuse the reader. Of course, this is me trying to edit myself while writing, which isn’t a very good idea (at least for me).

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