How can I make a disturbing first-person narrator compelling?

Asked by: Brittany Burket

How do you reveal an unreliable narrator?

Try these tips for incorporating an unreliable narrator in your story:

  1. Keep your reader in the dark. Readers are used to having more information than the characters. …
  2. Your narrator should be unreliable from the start. …
  3. Let other characters be a sounding board. …
  4. Experiment with just a pinch of unreliability.


What are some possible issues with a first-person narrator?

A piece written in first person can include only what that main character sees. This limits the amount of information or background in the story. The reader doesn’t get to see the action from any other character’s point of view. The story gives one main person’s experience and view on anything that happens.

How do you write an insane narrator?

9 Tips for Writing an Insane Character

  1. He is a man-vs-self conflict. …
  2. He deeply affects other characters. …
  3. His arc is driven by obsession. …
  4. He probably knows something’s not quite right. …
  5. He shows symptoms of a real mental disorder. …
  6. He has behavioural quirks. …
  7. He ignores primal urges. …
  8. He was set off by something.

What can make your narrator more interesting as a storyteller?

Qualities of a Great Story-Telling Narrator

  • They Enjoy What They are Doing. We create the scenery, imagine how the characters look and add our own inflections to the way that they speak. …
  • A Great Articulator. …
  • Knowing When to Use an Accent. …
  • Intuitive Pacing. …
  • Differentiating Characters. …
  • The Consistent Narrative Voice.


How do you make the reader trust your villain?

One of the easiest ways to make the reader trust a hidden villain is to have them act in a way which seems to counter their own machinations. The most common way of doing this is found in murder mysteries, and involves the villain being the one who hires the detective.

Is Harry Potter an unreliable narrator?

First, let’s establish the premise that Harry is an unreliable narrator. Yes, Harry grows and matures over the years, and to the best of his abilities, he attempts to convey the truth. I don’t mean to suggest that he’s attempting to mislead the reader intentionally. That’s a whole different kind of unreliable narrator.

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What are the advantages and limitations of first person point of view?

First Person



In this point of view, the readers experience the world vicariously through the narrator. The advantage of first person is that you can immediately connect with the reader. The disadvantage is that the author is limited to writing from one perspective.

What is the relationship between first person point of view and bias?

A narrator tells a story through a lens filtered by their opinions. In the first person point of view, the use of the pronoun “I” establishes a sense of familiarity between reader and narrator, allowing the writer to subtly influence the reader by telling a story with a bias.

Which point of view makes it easiest for readers to identify with the narrator’s feelings?

first person point of view

Using a first person point of view allows an author to dive much more deeply into the narrator’s character, since the reader gets to hear the narrator’s inner thoughts and experience the narrator’s emotions. Additionally, it makes the narrator the main character, or protagonist, of the story.

How do you write in first person without using too much?

Try recasting sentences that start with ‘I’ more objectively, so that the focus is on the what – the emotion, the object, the person, the action and so on – rather than the sense being used to experience it or the I-narrator doing the experience. Use the principles of free indirect speech to reduce your ‘I’ count.

How do you write thoughts in a first-person narrative?

In the first-person narrative, everything you write is straight out of the main character’s brain. You don’t need to clarify the character’s thoughts by placing them in italics or qualifying them with an “I thought” tag.

How can I become a better narrator?

According to many Voices clients, there is a general belief that a good narrator should be able to:

  1. Engage the listener.
  2. Make and keep a contract with the listener to suspend their disbelief.
  3. Give a consistent performance.
  4. Have intuitive timing.
  5. Develop multiple convincing character voices or use appropriate inflection.
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Who has the best narrator voice?

The 11 Best Movie Narrators

  • Joe Gillis, “Sunset Boulevard” …
  • Narrator, “The Royal Tenebaums” …
  • The Narrator, “Fight Club” …
  • Travis Bickle, “Taxi Driver” …
  • Joel Barish, “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” …
  • Henry Hill, “Goodfellas” …
  • Narrator, “Dr. …
  • Ralphie as an Adult, “A Christmas Story”

How should a narrator sound?


Always almost always is requesting for the narrator to sound engaged. Interested and what they're talking about which means that you'll sound naturally a little bit enthusiastic.

What are narration skills?

Narrative Skills include the ability to tell stories, as well as describing things and events. This skill set is important for reading comprehension; in simpler terms, it is grasping meaning from a story.

What are the 3 types of narration?

Types of Narration

  • First Person – In this point of view, a character (typically the protagonist, but not always) is telling the story. …
  • Second Person – In this point of view, the author uses a narrator to speak to the reader. …
  • Third Person – In this point of view, an external narrator is telling the story.


What are the characteristics of first person?

Characteristics of First Person Point of View:

  • Uses pronouns I, me, my, or we.
  • The narrator character retells the events of the story.
  • Readers know what the narrator is thinking and feeling.
  • The reader does not know the thoughts or feelings of other characters.


What is the difference between narration and narrator?

The narrator, simply put, is the “person” who tells the story. The story’s narration is the viewpoint from which the story is revealed. Sometimes the narrator is involved in the action of the story, in which case the story is written in the first person point of view — I, me, my, mine.

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What is a covert narrator?

A covert narrator, in contrast, is one who exhibits none of the features of overtness listed above: specifically, s/he is one who neither refers to him- or herself nor addresses any narratees, one who has a more or less neutral (nondistinctive) voice and style, one who is sexually indeterminate, one who shows no ‘ …

What is restricted narration?

restricted. Providing a view from the perspective of a single character. For example, restricted narration reveals information to the audience only as a specific character learns of it.

What is the theory of narratology?

narratology, in literary theory, the study of narrative structure. Narratology looks at what narratives have in common and what makes one different from another.

What is Todorov’s theory?

Narrative Structure Theory Narrative structure theory by Tzvetan Todorov (1960) is about how the narration in a story is created. In this theory, Todorov mentioned that there are 5 stages that a character will go through; those are Equilibrium, Disruption, Recognition Repair the Damage and Equilibrium Again.

What is Ludology vs narratology?

Narratologists argue that games are expressive due to their underlying narrative structures, and thus games can be interpreted like literary texts. On the other hand, Ludologists assert that a game’s rules and mechanics alone express the game’s meaning, and deny that games can be analyzed via literary methods.

What is the difference between Fabula and Syuzhet?

Fabula is the meat of the story while the syuzhet is the narration and how the story is organized. This specific screenplay structure employed by American cinema often utilizes original organization by showing the end first, and having the audience view how they got there.

What is Sjuzhet?

FABULA AND SJUZHET: Fabula refers to the chronological sequence of events in a narrative; sjuzhet is the re-presentation of those events (through narration, metaphor, camera angles, the re-ordering of the temporal sequence, and so on).

Who is a Narratee?

Noun. narratee (plural narratees) someone to whom a story is narrated.