The third person limited narrator is one that all fiction readers are familiar with. “As Sarah walked through the dense forest, she felt a sense of doom looming over her. Suddenly, she remembered the gift her father had given her before he went missing. She pulled out the compass from her bag and felt a sense of hope flood over her. I can make it out of here, she thought to herself. I can make it home.”
The above snippet of text is an example of the third person limited narrator. Third person limited means that the story is told from an outside narrator who only knows the thoughts of one character in the novel. This third person limited narrator can work extremely well because it brings your readers closer to the protagonist of your story. By using a third person limited narrator, you can make your readers feel what your main character feels, question what they question. You can make them feel for your character during the struggles they may face. For example, if you were writing a coming of age story, you would want to use a third person limited narrator. Why? You would want to use a third person limited narrator because the struggles that your character is going to face will feel more personal. Using another kind of narrator would put distance between your readers and your characters. Instead of just reading facts about your story’s plot as it unfolds, your readers will be able to feel it through your protagonist. Using a third person limited narrator is a great way to make your work of fiction feel more real to your readers.
Should Fiction Always Use a Third Person Limited Narrator?
The answer to that question would be—no. A third person limited narrator has a lot of perks when it comes to writing a fiction novel. However, if your novel is going to be bringing in a lot of information about the world you have created, this point of view may not do your novel justice. “Limited” is right there in the title, and that does not always work well for some stories. It is possible to use a third person limited narrator in new and creative ways to show your readers information about your world, you just have to figure out which ways work best for you as a writer.
This is your time to experiment with your writing! Especially if you are a newbie writer! Try out the third person limited narrator and see if that point of view works for you! And don’t forget, you can always visit Write One Publications and set up a brief coaching session! We can discuss your novel and see if a third person limited narrator is the right point of view for your future novel!