Author Topic: Do people read stories where the main character talks directly to them....?  (Read 583 times)

Offline AJ Trelawny

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Hi.

So, a very random question that I probably would have just asked Dadra, but  I know I will forget by Thursday...

I have, I think, a great idea for a short story. However, as I play it out in my head I find that my main character seems to be talking to the audience a little. This is mostly at the beginning and end.

My question is, do grown ups read books where the main point of view character tells them things directly?
For example:

"Ok, let me back up a bit here, you are probably wondering who Sami is? Well she is my bestest friend ever. We've been so close since about age 7, when I fell off the monkey bars onto her head. We spent three hours in the school medical room together waiting for our parents. We left as firm friends."

The theme of the story is quite distinctly adult, hence why I am asking if this is a format used in grown up books. I guess I am after an answer as to whether it's worth getting this story out of my brain and on to paper?

(Also, the little bit of story above is just straight out of my brain, so please be gentle if you notice any errors in it.)

Many thanks for looking
AJ x

Offline sallyj

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Hi AJ - I don't think there are any rules about this, so you could give it a try. The other option is to write the story in the third person & drop this info in as backstory.
Blog: http://sally-jenkins.com
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hillwalker3000

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The 2016 Costa Book of the Year - Days Without End by Sebastian Barry - is written entirely this way. It can work, as long as you don't ramble on or include too many pointless asides (such as "Hold on to your hats while I tell you what happened when I first met my wife's family").

H3K

Jo Bannister

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If you build it, they will come...  If you write it well enough, it will work. 

Like so many aspects of our craft, the rule is: The rules only apply until you're good enough to do without them.  But that isn't a get-out-of-jail-free card.  You really do have to be good.  Breaking the rules and conventions because you're too stupid to learn them, too lazy to apply them or think you're a good enough writer when you're not, is immediately obvious to everyone and a massive turn-off to most readers.

I suggest you write your story the way it seems to want to be written, and then cast a cold eye over it to see if it worked.  If it didn't, rewrites never take as much time as we think they're going to do.

Offline AJ Trelawny

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Thanks for the feedback, I really appreciate the advice and encouragement.
I have drafted out a timeline for the story and will commit it to paper over the next few days. Hopefully it will look as good written down as it does in my head 🤞.

Offline Shortcross

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Bordering on metafiction, and (IMO) to be avoided at all costs! :)

It'd drive me nuts.

Offline AJ Trelawny

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Thankyou for your feedback. I will bear it in mind going forward.