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We Need a Bigger Bed

byStonedancer©
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by Anonymous

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by kaf11/26/16

Identifying with characters.

For a story to work, the reader must identify with it.

You have chosen to write your story in the second person, addressing a woman as "you". The majority of readers here are male, so you have successfully ensured that most of your potential audience can't identify with the story. Even if it was a 50:50 readership, you would have lost half.

Writing in the third person always works better. That is why nearly all writers, novelists etc use it. The reader can choose which character to identify with. In this story, if written in the third person, I may identify with the husband while someone else with the wife or with the lover. As it is written here, I can't identify with anyone so the story fails.

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by Epiphany_Jones11/26/16

Everything the last comment addressed, and:

Telling a story uses different regions of the brain. You can often tell when someone's accessing a specific part of their brain by watching their eyes: Suppose you ask your spouse a question: "Did I see you walking into a hotel this afternoon?" If they look up and right (your right), they're "retrieving visual memories". To the right and level, they're remembering auditory information. While if they look to the left, they're visiting the creative part of the brain. (In other words, they're getting ready to lie.)

Why am I discussing how your eyes betray your thoughts? Because when I read a story told in the first person, present tense, all I can think is "STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS!" It knocks me right out of the scene when "you" are describing what I'm doing, while I'm "not doing what you're describing". So, from that scenario of looking for memories or making up a lie, I suspect the reaction to 1P/PT (first person, present tense) is just as autonomic. However we're wired, we seem to stay wired. In this case, it's probably a matter of how you're used to hearing someone share a story. If you're USED to stream of consciousness, you're less likely to have that strong impulse to reject it, while if you're not used to it, it strikes you as alien (or at least odd) in concept. Your decision to continue reading after the first paragraphs, or just bail on it is likely the product of your experiences and is only reinforced as you experience more. (So, as much as you dislike 1P/PT today, you're going to dislike it EVEN MORE tomorrow.)

Add to that the fact the the OVERWHELMING majority of authors who attempt to tell a story from this perspective do so badly. Very badly. Which stacks the deck against other authors who might not be "that bad", but suddenly find themselves lumped in with some really crappy stories.

TAKING ALL THAT into consideration, this story wasn't the worst I've read (keeping in mind the bar isn't set very high in comparison) but it's also far from the best. Try a more conventional method of story-telling and you'll probably do fine.

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by Anonymous11/27/16

We need a bigger bed

Which time zone are you in, past or present?
There'a place for here and now, and a place that seems to be fantasy, but no transition. That's a painful read.

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by kaf11/27/16

@Epiphany_Jones

The story is in the 2nd person, which makes all your comments about 1st person rather redundant. The left-right thing you mention is psychobabble.

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by foolscap11/27/16

Literary point of view

Point of View Definition
Point of view is the angle of considering things, which shows us the opinion, or feelings of the individuals involved in a situation. In literature, point of view is the mode of narration that an author employs to let the readers “hear” and “see” what takes place in a story, poem, essay etc.

Point of view is a reflection of the opinion an individual from real life or fiction can have. Examples of point of view belong to one of these three major kinds:

1. First person point of view involves the use of either of the two pronouns “I” and “we”.

Example:
“I felt like I was getting drowned with shame and disgrace.”
2. Second person point of view employs the pronoun “you”.

“Sometimes you cannot clearly discern between anger and frustration.”
3. Third person point of view uses pronouns like “he”, “she”, “it”, “they” or a name.

“Mr. Stewart is a principled man. He acts by the book and never lets you deceive him easily.”
~~http://literarydevices.net/point-of-vie w/

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