OBJECTIVE/THIRD-PERSON POINT OF VIEW
Lucy looked through her windscreen at the snow-covered road. She noticed the tracks of other cars as she turned the ignition. Driving carefully, she eased her way down the steep hill to make her usual turn into Main Street. As she put her foot on the brakes to steady the car downwards she noticed something was wrong.
Lucy was pressing the brakes, but instead of slowing down the car was picking up speed. She slammed the brakes, but the car just moved faster. The tyres had no grip on the road. The car was skating. She had lost all control. She frantically pressed at the brakes but was not able to come to a stop. Lucy looked around for help but nobody could see she was in trouble. She pressed down on her horn to warn the driver ahead. She closed her eyes and held the steering wheel tightly as the cars finally collided. Passers-by and other drivers turned as they heard the crush of metal upon impact.
SUBJECTIVE/FIRST-PERSON POINT OF VIEW
I sat in my car for a moment and looked at the snow-covered road ahead. As I turned the ignition, I hesitated and wondered whether I should really be driving in such terrible conditions. I noticed the tracks made by other cars in the snow and shook off any doubts. I drove off carefully and began my usual route down a steep hill towards Main Street.
I knew something was wrong right away. I just didn't feel in control of the car. My heart began to race and I clung to the steering wheel. I was so scared my palms began to sweat. The tyres were not gripping the road and the car was skating. Even as I stamped on the brakes the car only moved faster and faster.
I looked up and saw the red light ahead. I slammed on my brakes again but the car just raced downwards. I knew I was powerless to stop. Panicked, I looked around and screamed for help. No-one could hear me. No-one was even looking. I knew I was going to crash. I frantically beeped my horn over and over again. I wanted to warn the driver ahead.
There wasn't enough time. All I could do was hold my breath, close my eyes and cling to the steering wheel. It felt has though it was all happening in slow motion but really it was just a few seconds. The noise the crush of metal against metal made was horrifying. I shouldn't have driven that day.
I read both accounts of the car accident to a friend. She said she found the story written in the third-person interesting, she said it was as if she was walking along the street at the time and could picture the accident as it happened. However, she thought the story written in first-person was much more exciting. She said she felt panicked just listening to the story of the accident. As my friend listened to the story she felt she was the ‘I' in the story, and not just watching it happen. She felt as though she was the one driving the car.
The language in the story told from a third-person point of view is straight-forward. However, in the story told in first-person the language is more interesting and varied. The repetition of ‘I' makes the description more personal than the third-person point of view. There are more adjectives like ‘terrible' and more emotion such as ‘powerless'. The first-person narrative is more descriptive and detailed than the third-person. I added more about how the driver felt and what was going really going through the driver's mind.
I found writing in the first-person much more enjoyable than the third-person. Writing in the third-person was more difficult and I found it harder to think of details to add. I felt that the extra detail and emotion came easily when writing from my perspective. I thought about what I would feel and how I would react. I could imagine myself as the driver and really consider what it would be like in that situation.
I think that the first-person account is a more effective story. The third-person point of view is matter of fact and reads like an account you might give to the police. However, the purpose of the first-person account is to make the audience feel involved.