Today we explored the kinds of POINT OF VIEW that authors use when they craft a story. As we read short fiction from all different genres, we see that each story is told through a different lens...
Some authors use 1st person point of view, whereby a character in the story is the narrator, and the "I" voice is how we see all other characters and events. A great example of 1st person POV is that lovely first line from S.E. Hinton's The Outsiders: "When I left the movie house that night, I had only two things on my mind: Paul Newman, and a ride home."
Some authors (though rarely) use 2nd person point of view, whereby the "you" voice is is how we see all the events and characters within the story. A great example of this is Jay McInerney's famous novel Bright Lights, Big City (which was made into a film starring Michael J. Fox). The entire novel is told in the "you" voice, so the narrator is always describing action, thoughts, and emotions by saying things like, "Your heartbreak is just another version of the same old story."
Other authors use 3rd person limited point of view, whereby we learn about events and emotions through the eyes of one or 2 characters within the story. The writing voice, here, uses "she / he / they." However, the narrator doe snot know what EVERY CHARACTER in the story thinks or feels--only one or two characters. An example would be Margie from our short story, "The Fun They Had." Asimov writes, "Margie was thinking about how the kids must have loved it in the old days."
Finally, we have 3rd person omniscient point of view, where the narrator of the story KNOWS EVERYONE'S EMOTIONS, THOUGHTS, AND VIEWS. The narrator here can take turns telling the story from different perspectives, in order to access every character's vision. It is still told in the "she / he / they" voice, but the narrator can use ANY "she / he / they" within the story, not just one or two!
After exploring POV and sharing some funny examples, we dove into a new short story by Joan Bauer entitled, "The Truth about Sharks." We read and annotated and tomorrow will do an activity with the story.
Our word of the day was omniscient, which means ALL KNOWING!
Our quote of the day was from Dr. Seuss: "I like nonsense; it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living."
Our homework for tonight is to finish reading and annotating the short story, "The Truth about Sharks" by Joan Bauer.