Second Person Point Of View

In second person point of view, the the second person referred to is ‘you’. So, the second person point of view in a story would go something like this:

You woke up suddenly. What had woken you? That strange noise – that rhythymic banging. But what was it? And hang on a second – where were you? This wasn’t where you had gone asleep. This wasn’t your bedroom. What had happened to you while you slept?

You get the idea.

In practice, this POV is very rarely used, and the reason for that is that it’s pretty much impossible to pull off successfully.

The thing is, there’s an agreement going on between you and the reader. Your reader agrees to suspend her disbelief, and allow herself to imagine herself witnessing the action you’re describing, to pretend that she believes what she’s reading is real, that it really happened.

You, as the writer, agree to facilitate this and above all, not to mess it up.

Second person Point Of View messes it up.

The reason for this is because the reader will, despite herself, be thinking at some level, “No I’m not!” (waking up in a strange room, or whatever.)

This breaks the reader’s trance, which is also known as the narrative dream or the fictive dream.

This, in turn, knocks her out of the story and that is exactly what you don’t want.

So, although I include this information on second person point of view for completeness sake, I don’t recommend using it ever. Use either the First Person Point Of View, or one of the Third Person Points Of View: ObjectiveOmniscient, or Limited.