Friday, October 10, 2014

What Do You Look For?

Hello everyone! Today's post is a little bit different from others here on the blog. It's definitely still bookish, but it's more of a discussion post and sharing my thoughts on something in particular than it is a part of a series like my Let's Talk and Other Thoughts discussions, but just the random musings of a book blogger. So, what do you look for in a protagonist who tells the story? A narrator for your story is essential to the reading in general. They are your lens, your perspective, your guide into a foreign world, and as such a narrating protagonist can make or break your novel. So, I thought about what makes some books amazing and what makes a protagonist really stand out, and I thought I would list three of these qualities to you all.

A Unique Voice
So, here's the thing. A narrator or protagonist can be unreliable (I mean, the story is coming from their point of view and you're only seeing their side of events) and in other cases they can be reliable. Sometimes they are good people and sometimes they're villains. But in any case, a narrator has to have a unique voice for me. What sets this character from all the others we've read in books? As a reader, can I see their mannerisms and quirks come out from the writing? That's part of what makes a narrator memorable for me.

I do not want to read a perfect character. I want to read a character who grows, struggles, and makes mistakes. I want a character that has qualities about himself or herself that they dislike, and has moments where they think back and realize they're in the wrong. If I'm reading about people, then let's have the flawed, imperfect individual who changes and grows.

Introspection is important in a narrator. They have to be able to see the events going on around them, recognize their place in the happenings, and have the capability to bring more to the story than a record of what happened and who said what. The novel needs to have movement and emotion, and a lot of that comes from the perspective of the narrator. The story reaches a new level when a narrator is able to bring together the events, the characters, and the meaning that is seen through the course of the novel. How do these events impact the narrator, and how do the relationships with the other characters relate? There's something universal about books, and the depth a narrator provides can make a book truly memorable for me.

So, there is a random sort of post about my thoughts on first person narrators and protagonists. I wanted to share this with you all because it'd been on my mind, and I want to hear what you all think of it. I'll see you next time!

From the paper world,

1 comment:

  1. Character growth is huge for me. I hate when things are too easy for characters which ties right into your point about flaws. They have to have flaws in order to grow. Perfect characters are boring. I also really love when characters have a unique voice. I just talked about this in my review of H2O that went up today. What made that book for me was the MC. Her voice was so unique, realistic and different and it made all the difference.


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