First Person in a Fantasy story

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GARLAND3688
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First Person in a Fantasy story

Postby GARLAND3688 » Sat Oct 07, 2017 2:23 am

Hello,

I was wondering what peoples thoughts were on writing in first person in a fantasy story? Like, can you picture a Lord of the rings type book written in first person, or does that just not work?

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Dreaming Imrryr
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Re: First Person in a Fantasy story

Postby Dreaming Imrryr » Sat Oct 07, 2017 6:04 am

SPOILER AHEAD for "Lord of the Rings". DO NOT READ IF YOU DON'T WANT TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS.

For "Lord of the Rings", no. Because in my opinion Frodo is not a unique or important enough character to carry the entire weight of an epic fantasy where the fate of the entire world is at stake. If the main character was only Aragorn or Gandalf, then yes. There were other characters who could resist the power of the ring and carry it to Mount Doom, and in the end Frodo actually failed and attempted to keep the ring.

For an epic fantasy with epic stakes, the good guys have to be an ensemble cast, or the single protagonist has to be so powerful, or such a charismatic leader, or uniquely key to the plot, that the quest would be doomed without them.

An ensemble cast needs a third person POV (or a rotating first person POV).

A single protagonist who meets the requirements above can pull off a (single) first person POV.

Conan the Barbarian is a powerful warrior and also a charismatic leader.

Elric of Melnibone is a unique character, with a unique destiny, and is uniquely focused upon by the great powers that shape the course of events. Elric plays a part in these events and his characteristics grant him the ability to alter these events to a certain extent.

EDITED to add:
Rotating 1st person POV.
Last edited by Dreaming Imrryr on Sat Oct 07, 2017 11:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

GARLAND3688
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Re: First Person in a Fantasy story

Postby GARLAND3688 » Sat Oct 07, 2017 9:11 am

Thank you so much for your reply and advice :)

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robjvargas
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Re: First Person in a Fantasy story

Postby robjvargas » Sat Oct 07, 2017 9:13 am

It's the epic nature of LOTR that leads me to no as well.

When the entire known world is at stake, can a story be made of just one character's POV? Well... yeah. But the story won't be epic. I won't say that it can't be done. That's exactly the time someone will pull it off. But you're dealing with two entirely different scales here. THE WORLD versus ONE PERSON. The footsoldier slogging a week through the backcountry to get to the battlefield because some elf told his king to send him. Versus that king, listening to the elf because the corrupted wizard is on his west, while an army of orcs waits for nightfall to cross his border to the south, and the dark hordes to the north.

Melding those two scales of context is, at best, very difficult.
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robjvargas
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Re: First Person in a Fantasy story

Postby robjvargas » Sat Oct 07, 2017 9:13 am

It's the epic nature of LOTR that leads me to no as well.

When the entire known world is at stake, can a story be made of just one character's POV? Well... yeah. But the story won't be epic. I won't say that it can't be done. That's exactly the time someone will pull it off. But you're dealing with two entirely different scales here. THE WORLD versus ONE PERSON. The footsoldier slogging a week through the backcountry to get to the battlefield because some elf told his king to send him. Versus that king, listening to the elf because the corrupted wizard is on his west, while an army of orcs waits for nightfall to cross his border to the south, and the dark hordes to the north.

Melding those two scales of context is, at best, very difficult.
Slowly putting together a "replacement" forum at http://writerswriting.proboards.com.

It's still under construction, but come take a look.


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