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How Do You Think????

Last week I came to a place in my novel that required internal dialogue. Although I usually write this in second person (What were you thinking? Andrea asked herself), there are also times I use first (I'm never doing that again).  These approaches got me to wondering if people really think this way or if it is merely a tool used in fiction. 

Personally, I tend to talk to myself in second person, but I couldn't help but wonder if this is the exception or the rule. Since I'm not a mind reader, the best way to find out for sure is to ask, sooo, here goes nothing.  Which POV do you use when talking to yourself.  The answers I receive here could enhance my approach to internal dialogue in fiction.  Until next time, happy writing. 


  1. I tried both in my head and realized I use both POVs. I guess it depends if I am talking to myself or it's my conscious talking to me.

    1. I see what you're saying here, Diane. For example, if I'm making a "to do" list in my head, I use first person. However, if I'm scolding myself I do it from second pov. It's interesting to know how others think. Thanks for stopping in to comment on my blog.

  2.'ve got me thinking too. I looked back for a few examples of inner dialogue in my writing, and pictured myself in the situation and tried out variations to see which came most naturally.

    I believe there in no clear answer here. I am convinced that when I talk to myself for real, first or second person will depend on the context. Neither is exclusively right.

    Example: "What were you thinking" v. "What was I thinking" - either is plausible, it depends on whether I visualize myself lecturing myself ("you") or feeling the question. Second person is more analytical, first person indicates a more visceral reaction. I say which you choose depends on what depth of connection or detachment you want to convey.

    Probably some thoughts will lend themselves more to one approach than the other. Also, there are lots of inner dialogues that are POV-neutral, for example "Ouch! That hurt!" or "What a beautiful sunset."

    1. Hi Botanist, it's been a while. So glad you stopped by.

      I've used a lot of inner dialogues that were POV neutral in my writing. It's easy to do that when writing in limited third. The context is also important.

      Based on some of the feedback here, I'd say almost anything goes. Interesting to know how people think.

  3. Most of my writing has been in first person, so it's easy to say first person. When I write in third person, I can use third person or sometimes I use first person/present tense in italics. I would have to show you some examples. It's hard to explain.

    1. I understand where you're coming from, Cindy. Although my piece is written in limited third pov, I've used internal dialogue in first person, present tense, italicized. That's deep in the character's head so I use it sparingly for effect. Thanks for stopping in to comment on my post. All the best.


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