Tuesday, April 07, 2009

My Favorite Person

I like reading books in the third person, though if a book is well-written, I'll forget my preference and read one in the first person. Why? The only thing I can figure out is although I like to identify with the characters, first person seems a bit too intrusive.

As far as articles and non-fiction go, first or second person are fine with me.

What about you? What's your favorite person? Please share.


  1. Definitely third. I like seeing the story from more than one angle.

    L. Diane Wolfe

  2. I'm with you. I prefer the third person. I find it difficult to get into the story that's written in first person because the Point of View person keeps getting in the way. That being said, I recently finish 'The Forest of Hands and Teeth' By Carrie Ryan. Somehow her first person narrative doesn't feel like first person. If I were to say anyone's a master at doing it well, she is.

  3. Anonymous8:18 AM

    Third is my favorite, much the same reason as Diane's - broader perspective. However, I HAVE enjoyed first person a few times when well written and the inside the head experience is complex and multi-dimensional. So it depends, but third primarily works best for me.

  4. I must write my 'tween series in 1st person because I am the character (as a twelve-year-old). Okay, some may say I still act like I'm twelve.

    Other adult fiction I write in 3rd. I enjoy reading both, though.


  5. I agree with you, Morgan. I like to get the different perspectives of various characters, so first person can be very limiting, especially where love scenes are concerned. Sometimes, that feels a little voyeuristic, depending upon the heat level of the book. And then there's the restrictive pronoun of "I" - that can get boring. Sometimes I want to ask, didn't anyone else do anything? I really appreciate the authors who write in first person but find creative ways around the overuse of the singular pronoun. Because even though it's written in first person, the story isn't all about "me" - no one lives in a vacuum; there have to be other characters involved to make it interesting. And if someone did live in a vacuum, why would I want to read that book?

  6. I suppose I don't have a preference, as long as the writing is good. That being said, when I have problems getting into a story, it's usually because it's written in first person and I'm having a hard time identifying with the character. Perhaps third person allows me to find a character I like and can follow.

    Gayle Carline

  7. If I had to choose a favorite, it would be first person because it's so intimate. The voice of the protagonist must draw me in, but it's not like a novel written in first person doesn't have many multi-layered characters. It's depth of character and the level of writing that keeps me reading, not the POV.

  8. Most of what I read is written in the third person POV. Fist person is more intimate, more personal. I think when an author uses first person POV, they want you to identify with that character, live the scenes with him or her, be that character for a brief time. That may be why it's difficult to read sometimes. You can't put distance between yourself and what happens to that character and what they feel and think.


  9. If it's a well-written book and a good story, I don't care what person it's written in.

    Jane Kennedy Sutton

  10. Anonymous11:25 AM

    It depends on the story. Since much of what I read is science and math, I guess pov makes little difference.

  11. I'm the oddball--I like it mixed. While I prefer the majority to be in third person, switching to first person at intense moments draws me into the story. I know-you aren't SUPPOSED to mix POVs

  12. Third person is my favorite but unless first person is well written I can handle that too.

    Cindy Hernandez

  13. Anonymous9:45 PM

    I usually write in third person. Yet I am working on a novel that is coming in 2nd person. yeah I know. one shouldn't do that. I've even collected comments from several how-to books about why not to write in second person and this book insists being in second person. can't do anything about it. oh the list I comments i'm sending along with my query so the agent will know that I'm not a newbie being dumb.
    Jo Ann Hernandez


  14. I love third person. I feel like you can get really close to the characters in third person. I tend to write in both third and first person, but definitely prefer to write in third. Oddly, I usually start things out in first, like I'm transcribing the story as it's told to me by the muse/character.

  15. I enjoy both POV's when well written, as long as the POV is appropriate for the story and the story is well written. In series (usually mystery), the whole series needs to be written in one or the other.

    In one of my favorite mystery series, the author switched POV for a single book from 1st the 3rd. It was obvious why he did it, but I kept hearing the author, thinking he was cheating, wondering what was wrong with the usual narrator, and had difficulty staying with the story.


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