I admit, I’m behind on my 90 Days to Your Novel by about a week. Here’s why: I had over 14,000 words when I started 90 Days, all of it in First Person. I love First Person- it makes me feel connected to the narrator and allows his voice to really come through. But now that I’m filling in bits and pieces of my outline and discovering new things about my characters, I’ve realized that a fairly large portion of the book will take place outside of the view of my narrator. At first I hoped I could accommodate that with clever “here’s what happened after I left” dialogue between the narrator and his love interest, the female protagonist, but now I realize there are certain things that she simply wouldn’t tell him. Those details are somewhat important to the story as they offer a glimpse into the antagonist’s psyche as well as his motivations, which otherwise wouldn’t be apparent.
I’ve been spending a lot of time writing scenes both ways to see how they work and I’ll admit to being completely undecided.
So…. my choices are, 1) Keep it in First Person, keep my narrator in the dark, and then use my antagonist to spill the beans about the protagonist’s activities to the narrator at a later time. (That would be just like him to rat her out and cause mischief, but this option is at the expense of depriving the reader of a behind-the-scenes look into the antagonist and his inner workings), or 2) Re-write the whole thing in Omniscient Third Person and let the reader experience events as they unfold, learn about the antagonist, and understand his struggles which wouldn’t be as obvious if they were seen through the eyes of the narrator.
In my mind, it boils down to this. In option 1, the book is about two characters, the narrator and the protagonist, and they are driven apart by an antagonist who is painted in a fairly bad light because his actions are interpreted through the narrator who hates him. In option 2, the book is equally about three very different characters, all of whom have their own struggles to overcome with conflicting motivations. I’m more comfortable with option 1 since that’s the path I’ve been on for months, but I can see the merit behind option 2. What to do… what to do…