Writing in the First Person

McCourt, Frank
January 2004
Literary Cavalcade;Jan2004, Vol. 56 Issue 4, p28
This article focuses on how one can write effectively in the first-person account. The author who is a contemporary master of the first person narrative suggests using a memory from one's own childhood as a starting point for writing a first-person account. He says the person who is writing should take the time to describe the physical scene and to give some context for the story. One should mention the other people in the scene and incorporate their speech into the essay using either direct or indirect dialogue. One should try to capture some of his/her own unique thought patterns in a sentence or two. One should always pace one's scenes. Use short sentences or paragraphs now and then to break the monotony. One word sentences are a good way to imply action or portray thoughts. Lastly, the best writing mixes multiply devices in the service of the story.


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