Monday, May 13, 2013

Why Third Person is My Writerly Comfy Blanky

I love writing third person. To me, it is so freeing. I love bouncing around from one character's head to the next. (Sometimes a little too much, as can be witnessed from the earlier drafts of Heirs of War). I've always written in third person. Maybe this habit stems from my first ventures into writing being in the form of scripts, or maybe I just enjoy pretending I'm the ever-omniscient (and in no way benevolent if you ask my characters) god of the world I've created. Who knows?

Either way, third person is definitely my preferred POV when writing. Which is exactly why I decided to write my new WIP (Altar of Reality) from the POV of the main character. Big deal, right? Oh, did I mention the main character is a teenager?

Before my beta readers remind me that Zelene and Ariana were both seventeen when Heirs of War started, I would like to stress that this teenager (sixteen, to be exact) is just your normal run-of-the-mill kinda gal. Biggest problem she has is epilepsy. That changes as the story moves on, but the point is she has no reason to be more mature than any other sixteen year old like Zelene did and like Ariana was forced to become with a quickness.

So, yeah...totally outside my comfort zone right now. And for the first time in my entire life I am having to force myself to sit down and write. With HoW, I had to force myself to stop. 10k days were pretty common to me. But this WIP is just supposed to be a much simpler tale in comparison, and yet it is so much harder to write.

I've been trying to figure that out as of late. I think it boils down to the same reason I don't blog a whole lot. It's not that I don't like talking about myself (well...mainly I just don't have much to say on that front. I write. A lot. The end.), but my personal story is so much more narrow than what I like. I love stories that are rich with characters, and I find that very hard to do with just one character telling the tale. Is it possible? Sure. I loved The Hunger Games and Vampire Academy, both of which have very lively worlds and characters with the story all told from one character's perspective. The question is: Can I do that?

Time (and beta readers) will tell. But for now, the moral of the story is this: Although the comfy blanky is, indeed, comfortable and safe, sometimes you really need to weather the storm without it. Because only then will you be faced with the questions I've talked about here, and only then will you start to grow as a writer.

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