Characters and styles

by McKinley

Hey! So this is a pretty weird idea that came to me recently. I was having some trouble getting my novel off the ground, the words I was writing just didn't sound right. So I went back and read a lot of the classics, and after reading from all if these different styles of writing, I thought of something. My book is about the lives of several different characters, and of course, each character has a different personality, so what I'm thinking is can I write each character with a different style that reflects their personalities. Maybe something like some characters are written in first person and others third, and stuff like that. So is this a good idea?

Answer: It would definitely be worthwhile to have your characters speak differently (in dialogue). It can also work to change the style of narration when you change point-of-view characters. (A more extreme example that comes to mind is The Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell.) It's a technique more common in literary than genre or mainstream fiction, but so what?

The challenge, of course, occurs if you have two or more of these characters in a scene together, because you have to decide whose point of view and whose style to use when narrating that scene. But I'm sure you will have little trouble deciding whose voice is more important when the time comes.

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