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a frog the size of texas

November 28th, 2007

11:50 am

rachelmanija has part 3 of her essay on PTSD posted.

03:04 pm - Point of view...

OK, so in this story whose rough draft I hammered out last night, I'm playing a bit with point of view, as used sometimes by people who attempt to write pompously academic-sounding essays/reports/whatever and who often fail hilariously. It's a sort of ... fake third person? for want of a better phrase. (unless one of you who Knows Better tells me what it is.) The characters are referred to in the third person, but "we" is used, and it's clear that the narrator is one of the group, and which one it is.

I know I've seen this used effectively before, but the only example I can remember is Kipling's Stalky & Co., where I think it's not obvious until near the end which of the boys is the narrator, and part of the fun lies in working out who he is. At least it was that way for me when I read it at the age of 14 or so - it might be obvious off the bat for everyone else. :D

I have no clearly-defined questions other than "what are the elements involved in doing this effectively?" but if any of you has any ideas, thoughts, or digressions on the subject, please post. :)

*goes to retrieve Stalky & Co. from the shelf*

ETA: Just grabbed S&C from the shelf, and I see I misremembered a bit - it's in pretty much normal 3rd up to the last chapter, which takes place much later with the students, now men, telling war stories and reminiscing about school days, and engaging in a bit of Where Are They Now? talk. It's told in first person, with the narrator unknown until the last page.

ETA2 I think the paranormal investigation report at www.memphisghosthunters.com/investigation_reports/2006/001-06.html fits sort of what I'm trying to do, only I'm making it funny (hopefully).
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