July 13, 2018

Choosing the Right Point of View for Your Story-Part One

By Caron Kamps Widden

I can already hear the groans from emerging writers who are confused about which point of view to use for their story.  Rest assured, even seasoned authors have a difficult time deciding.  In choosing the right point of view, the author sets in motion the vantage point from which the story will be told.  Here are the different points of view an author can use:

·         First Person – “I” or “We” (told from one character’s perspective)

·         Second Person – “You” (rarely used in fiction, from an onlooker’s perspective writing about you -- often used in advertising and speeches)

·         Third Person – “He,” “She,” “It” or “They” (the narrator tells the story through one character’s point of view -- or if carefully divided by paragraphs and/or chapters -- one or more or even several character’s points of view) 

Writers must settle on the best point of view for their story and be consistent throughout the manuscript in order to create a rich experience for the reader.  Many authors swear by first person, writing emotionally charged scenes allowing the reader to get deep inside the psyche of the character.  More often, novels are written in third person, freeing the author to expand the plotline while still delving into the heart and soul of the characters.  In part two, I’ll share more details about each point of view.

Happy Writing.
Caron Kamps Widden is the author of RESTORATION, a novel (2006 Hilliard & Harris) and THE LIES WE KEEP, a suspense novel (2015 Hilliard & Harris).  She is currently at work on her third novel and lives in the Baltimore area. You can find Caron online at:,,,,,

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