• Browsing all articles in Narrative & Plot

    On Narrative Perspective, Consistency and Clowns

    Posted Posted by David Duhr in Narrative & Plot     Comments 2 comments

    Recently on the blog Justine laid down some truth on “How to Resolve a Character Arc.” Her main rule boils down to this: Satisfy your reader’s expectations. But character arc isn’t the only area in which a writer must satisfy expectations.

    A few days ago we received the following question from an anonymous WriteByNighter:

    “I am helping a friend by reading and reviewing her story. I’ve searched Google and editor’s blogs for an answer and can’t find anything to address my specific problem.

    You see, my friend likes to mix first and third person. I see all kinds of people saying this is fine, but they usually assume the shift includes a head-hop as well. Problem is, my friend narrates in third and then when she wants to share the character’s thoughts, she switches to first, without adding in italics or a speech tag. It comes across as something like this:

    Daniel smiled. I didn’t know clowns could be so much fun.

    I’ve told her she should pick one or the other and stay consistent. Is this good advice or am I being overly picky?” read more