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Which Viewpoint do you use and why? Options · View
Posted: Wednesday, May 5, 2010 12:29:36 PM

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First, it is more personal and I tend to put a bit of myself in each story. I have written three stories in third person...my first and third story were both written in third person, this was just before I felt comfortable writing about my own sexual feelings in stories. I seemed to have gotten over that by my fourth story.
The only other story I wrote in third person was "The New Year's Eve Dance" about a guy who hates holidays after his significant other dies, and ends up meeting someone at, well, a New Year's Eve dance.
I wrote it in third person to detach myself from it...It would have been too hard to write in first person for me considering I lost my fiance in Aug. 2006...
I find third person to be more of a chore to write in...it's much easier for me to just stick myself in the story and "go" so to speak.
To give you an idea how much I hate third person...I had ideas for a couple of stories set back in the sixties. I actually hate writing in third person so much that I created a new screen name, 67Goat just for the two stories I had planned. 67Goat is currently a 63-year-old man. I ended up writing more than the two stories...any story I posted here with 67Goat in the tag was originally posted under that name.

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Posted: Sunday, May 16, 2010 11:55:06 AM

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First or third person. First is more 'immediate' but it does not suit all stories. Omniscent I think is a mistake, the sexual experience is personal, and omniscent POV is always personal. A story needs a narrator who is involved with the story, even if they aren't the person telling it, their viewpoint and feelings must predominate.
Posted: Sunday, May 16, 2010 6:23:04 PM

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Depends on the story. But I stick to two different ones between all my stories. Most are third person, past tense and sometimes I like to write in first person, past tense. As far as the publishing world, those both are the most common and most accepted. Second person in any tense is next to impossible to sell. First person in future or present tense are not impossible, but it is very rare. Third person present can be interesting. It's rare in books, but if done well, readers don't seem to mind. I've never seen anything written in third/future.

Among publishers, third person, past tense is king. That is a style accepted by all publishers I've ever encountered. first person, past tense is second, but there are publishers who won't even read your submission if its not Third/Past.


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Posted: Monday, May 14, 2012 12:53:16 PM

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I use 1st & 3rd POV...2nd POV just seems weird to write in.
Posted: Wednesday, May 16, 2012 12:31:01 PM

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I usually write in Third Person or Overview. I find First Person far too personal and then, I tend to write more like I am writing in a journal! lol

My stories are based on real feelings/events, but it feels less personal to use the third person perspective. In my poetry, it is usually First Person.
Posted: Wednesday, May 16, 2012 12:59:35 PM

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I wrote my first story on here using the first person viewpoint but I prefer using the third person viewpoint. I guess it also depends on the story and what you're more comfortable with and what you believe fits best in the context.

It did happen that even though I wrote in third person viewpoint, the story affected me a lot. I suppose it depends on the situation the character was in and his/her thoughts at that particular point. While I was writing 'A Holiday, The Perfect Cure To A Heartbreak', I found that it ruined my mood for hours because I was so engrossed in describing the main character who was heartbroken.

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Posted: Wednesday, May 16, 2012 2:14:08 PM

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I usually use the first person, but I also like the third person. I wrote my first story in second person, which was a bit weird but I thought it worked for that particular story. I've also written in a mix of first and third.
Posted: Friday, May 25, 2012 4:09:49 AM

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I think, whichever you decide, it's important to try and be consistent within a single story. It's certainly awkward if you jump between first person and any of the others, but it's important if you pick a third person perspective that you stay consistent with viewing everything from that character's point of view.

An example comes to mind from my own story that I just finished ("The Training of Lucy"). In it, Lucy sees a rack of computer equipment in Sean's study. The story is being told from her perspective, so the narrative description of it wasn't a rack of computer equipment, but rather a shelf full of technical looking gizmos all wired together. She couldn't know what it was, merely what it looked like.

I wrote "Lucy" from her point of view as a bit of a personal challenge. I'm neither a woman, nor a submissive, hence the challenge. But by writing in the third person, rather than the first, I could still step back just a little bit and offer a more neutral perspective on some of her conflicted thoughts. It also allowed me to better describe events that she would likely only be distantly conscious of - like what her lover was doing while she was lost in the throws of orgasm.

Still, if you're going to do that, you have to be content not to describe action that takes place outside of eye- or ear-shot of your chosen character, and not share the internal thoughts of the other characters. That too can be challenging, but in my case, I think it helped lend an air of mystery to the antagonist, since there was no direct window into his mind.

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Posted: Friday, May 25, 2012 5:30:01 PM

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Gurlyboy wrote:
I wrote my first story in second person, which was a bit weird but I thought it worked for that particular story.

Just to clarify, are you saying that what you wrote was similar to the style of the Sherlock Holmes stories? Where Dr. Watson is speaking in the first person describing the words and actions of the protagonist?

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Posted: Friday, May 25, 2012 6:54:48 PM

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I use first person.

It's easier to put myself in the story which in turn makes it easier for me to write.

Also some of these stores are my personal fantasies so it makes sense to use I
Posted: Saturday, May 26, 2012 12:00:42 AM

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I use the first, because I believe it's easier to get inside the reader's head that way.

My latest story is too hot to publish. My most recent story before that is Even Stranger In Lust
Posted: Saturday, May 26, 2012 11:25:39 AM

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Most beginning writers lean toward first person. To many, it feels more intuitive, and is more intimate. However, most writing 'gurus' agree it's much harder to handle properly than is third person. It comes down to matter of writer preference and the nature of the story.

My 'From Becky:...'(see sig line) story is in first person with a female POV. The other story in my sig line 'How Humans Do It' has a big mouth bass as the protag and despite claims there is a similarity with the writer, it's in third person.

I strongly recommend going back and reading Brindle's post. I give it a big, Amen.


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Posted: Tuesday, May 29, 2012 6:11:17 AM

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All my writing is 1st person, present tense. As a reader I find 3rd person past tense dislocating and experience difficulty engaging in any depth with the characters.

My stories have always been about ME ... how self-obsessed is that? ... so it has always seemed appropriate to focus the narrative clearly from the character representative of me. Other characters simply exist for me to interact with, to act as reflective objects of my inner desires and demons.

One day, maybe, I'll escape such teenage behaviour, grow up and engage in proper omniscient 3rd person narratation with a range of fully developed characters ...

Though I doubt it x

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Posted: Tuesday, May 29, 2012 12:47:00 PM

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When I am writing memories as stories, I write in the first person, past tense, as I remembered it.

When I write madey-uppy stories, I tend to write in the third person, also past tense.

I don't know why, but I find myself irritated by present tense stories, although that might not be the tense, but the stories themselves. I have used second person viewpoint (thank you for explaining, Clum!) in poems, but it's not something I like to read.

I did write one story where the viewpoint (always third person) switches between two characters (I believe this may be multiple viewpoint?). Nobody has trashed me for it yet, so I think it may have worked. I didn't set out to do that, though.

Generally, I prefer to both read and write in the third person, past tense. I don't know why, but I do know that I don't like reading first person stories very much, as I feel bound to the one character, and find it hard to get an overview. I like overviews, as I like to know everything that's going on. But a good writer means that I don't notice any of that, just that I feel I have been transported somewhere else and enjoy the ride.

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Posted: Tuesday, May 29, 2012 5:18:13 PM

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Despite the viewpoint limitations of writing in first person, I do use is almost exclusively. Second person feels almost voyeuristic to me and although third person allows the writer to pick and choose scenes to build the story, I still do prefer the emotional release of first person.

I do tend to play with tenses within a story and often change it several times before I am satisfied. My preference is to open the story in present tense, then fall back to past tense to create the background structure for the story and finally slipping into present tense for the actual story.

Posted: Wednesday, May 30, 2012 7:04:19 PM

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Dancing_Doll wrote:
I tend to like first person narrative when reading short-story erotica. It gives the illusion (whether the story is true, or just imagined) that the fantasy encounter is a dirty dark confessional that the writer is choosing to share with an audience.

However, I have found that writing in first person is also much more personal and vulnerable for an author. I do feel like I'm sharing a part of myself that very few people will ever know of me. Sometimes that can put me a bit on edge in an unexpected way. It's more intense.

I also appreciate a good third personal narrative if it's well. It's less personal for the author, and I find that creating the characters and the plot line can be done with fewer inhibitions.... At least in my own experience, anyway.

All I can do is totally echo Dancing Doll. Though I'm still very much new at this, I've only used first person present so far. I'm not confident enough in my character development to write in third person, though I do like to read it. But I find, especially for erotica, first person present really drops the reader immediately into the story, and they experience everything right along with the narrator, the "me" voice. It made things more intense for me, even to write. But, and I thank Dancing Doll for the observation, because I never thought of it before, it DOES make the author vulnerable, in a way. That explains why I sometimes feel a bit shaky and raw, I guess, when I finish a story.
Posted: Tuesday, July 24, 2012 11:21:46 PM

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Sorry, just had to share...

First person, second person and third person walk into a bar. First person says, "I'll have a beer." Second person says, "You buying?" Third person says, "He never buys."

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Posted: Wednesday, July 25, 2012 5:52:11 PM

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I tend to write in the first person most of the time
Posted: Thursday, July 26, 2012 4:55:32 PM

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3rd person is how I write my stories. It somehow seems more sophisticated to me. 1st person is much easier to write though and when I'm really hung up on writer's block I'll brainstorm in it, then re-write and switch over if it's worth saving.
Posted: Friday, July 27, 2012 1:05:42 PM

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Seriously depends! I'm in the mood for first lately though! :)
Posted: Sunday, August 26, 2012 7:53:54 PM

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Right now I'm using a blend of first-person present-tense (pronoun only), and first-person past-tense. This is in my erotica for Lush. I'm planning a story written in an outright second-person perspective just for fun sometime. I've tried it before and had it work okay, but I think it will work great in an erotic context? Anybody else on second person writing?
Posted: Sunday, August 26, 2012 7:55:35 PM

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Really, DirtyMartini? I'm giggling and frowning simultaneously. Bet I look funny.
Posted: Sunday, September 16, 2012 11:24:54 PM

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I almost always use first person so that that person's thoughts and feelings can be explored. It's far easier to identify with a character who you know what they're thinking and feeling. Also, even though I'm a man, I've tended to write from the woman's perspective more. It's more erotic when the main character is the woman because, I think, they cannot be coy and hide something from you when you know their very thoughts. I can make the woman mentally attractive, and it's patently that way to the reader.
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