Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Power of I

I love to read first person accounts. They just seem to drop me right into the main character's head and I see everything from their point of view. One of my very favorite (read that as I read over and over) is Elizabeth Peters' Peabody series.

From the beginning I was one with Amelia. For a mystery it's a wonderful way to have it unfold. As the character seizes on red herrings so do you; as they track down the real culprit so do you. It's a heady experience.

I also like the power of I because it's active voice. I did this; I did that; I accomplished that goal; I solved that mystery; I overcame.

Perhaps that's why each book in the BOM is so special and endearing to me, because I am getting their pov...what Nephi thought; what Mormon saw; what Samuel said. I've come to love Joseph Smith even more by teaching RS these last two years and hearing his experiences from his perspective.

There is a power in I. Think about how that sentence is structured. Does it hum with power or just sit there? What if I said: I see the power in I. Doesn't it make a strong, bold statement?

Yes, just call me the fan club president of I.

6 comments:

  1. Hey, I LOVE Elizabeth Peters too. One summer I read every book in her series. It was so much fun. But I struggle with writing in first person because it's so confining. I've often started that was but always seem to change to third.

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  2. I also love Elizabeth Peters. I'm sad that she hasn't come out with anymore books in her Peabody series. I wrote her a letter once, and she sent me a handwritten postcard. What a neato lady.

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  3. I've never been a fan of first person accounts in fiction. In fact, few things will make me want to close a book faster than to see it start off with "I". And yet, two of my all-time favorite series are the Amelia Peabody series and the Merlin trilogy by Mary Stewart. So maybe on that subject, you can actually just call me "conflicted". ;-)

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  4. I've never been a fan of first person accounts in fiction. In fact, few things will make me want to close a book faster than to see it start off with "I". And yet, two of my all-time favorite series are the Amelia Peabody series and the Merlin trilogy by Mary Stewart. So maybe on that subject, you can actually just call me "conflicted". ;-)

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  5. Very interesting, Terri! I don't think I have every stopped to think about the Book of Mormon from that perspective. I also haven't read the Peabody series...wow...where have i been??? thanks for the food for thought! and the reading list..lol

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  6. I love Amelia Peabody--about died laughing in one of the books when she sent her injured reporter "friend" glaceed apricots because the gesture suited her so perfectly. "I" hope to create such endearing characters...hadn't thought about POV as a vehicle. Thanks for the insight.

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