First Person . . . I . . . I . . .

The First Person
A story written in the first person is told by an “I,” where “I” can be the main character, a less important character witnessing events, or a person retelling a story they were told by someone else. This point of view is often effective in giving a sense of closeness to the character. It can be very easy to get the reader to identify or sympathize with your main character when the reader is seeing everything through that character’s eyes.

There are some important things to consider when writing in first person, though. First of all, you need to decide how this story is being told.

Is the character writing it down?

Telling it out loud?

Thinking it to their self?

And if they are writing it down, is it something meant to be read by the public? Or is it a private diary?

A story meant for one other person?

The way the first person narrator is relating the story will affect how you write it, the language you choose, the length of your sentences, your tone of voice and many other things. The reader should have at least some sense of this as well. The way they interpret a story could be very different if it is told as a secret diary or if it is a public statement. (


An excellent example of a story told from multiple first-person points-of-view is Ruta Sepetys’ Salt to the Sea.

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