I was having a discussion with a couple of fellow authors the other day about point-of-view (POV). By that I mean first person (the story is told from the POV of the narrator, as if in their head) versus third person (an omniscient narrator). (I'm not going to discuss second person, because, frankly, that technique jars me and I don't read books told in second.)
I know there are a lot of people who don't like first person POV books, but I'm not one of them. I love first person, because it puts me in the narrator's head and lets me feel and think from there. It means sometimes, the actions of other characters are seen through that character's filter, so to speak. We don't know the motivations and thoughts behind other characters' actions. We don't know what's coming next. Only what the narrator knows (or thinks they know). And as a writer, sometimes it's fun to settle down in one character's "voice" for a whole book, something that might not be sustainable for a third person POV.
I don't write a lot of first person POV, simply because many of the stories I'm telling, you have to get inside the principle characters' heads and jumping around in first person to do that would be...well, unusual. Not necessarily "bad" because I did that in Domme by Default. Of course, there were only two narrators and the POV switched back and forth by chapter between them.
But, honestly? I don't understand why some people don't like first person. And this is NOT a rant, please understand that. It's just me trying to understand the whys. I get it that it's different strokes and all that, and no problem with that. Is it just a personal preference? I don't like second person, and I also don't like present tense for a book. If I see a book is written in either of those, I'm done. I'll pass. First person present and third person present will not find me a fan. It's just a jarring technique to me, especially if I find "slips" into past tense in the story (there almost always are).
So I can understand that people don't like first person past tense, but I don't understand the why.
What are your preferences for reading (or writing) a book? Or do you have one? Are there POVs and tenses that turn you off and you won't read them regardless who the author is? If you're a writer, do you have a preferred POV you stick with, or do you play around? Sound out in the comments below and let me know what you think.
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