The Creator knows all things, past, present, and future. He knows people’s thoughts, their motives, and their goals. The Creature “knows” only what he or she can sense at the moment, a perception that is often wrong because of all that can’t be seen. The Creator may enjoy being in the minds of all his characters, but that position isn’t natural for the Creature reading the story.
The most engaging role for readers is to be a participant in the action, not an omniscient reporter.
- You Are the Creator.
Because you are the creator of your story, you have the God-like power to give unlimited details. When you write from that perspective, readers assume your position, seeing and knowing everything you tell them.
- Choose Your Limitations.
The most important limitation is your position, both in time and place. Where in your story are you standing as you write? You might be a character in the story, an unseen observer, or an all-knowing reporter. Whatever you choose, stay there. Don’t jump around.
- Reveal No Truth before Its Time.
An omniscient reporter doesn’t have to tell everything he knows. Without at least some mystery or suspense, readers already know the score and aren’t inclined to be involved in the game. Readers want to predict the outcome of a story, but they’ll be disappointed if they are right. If nothing is unknown, then nothing can be learned. You might have news, but you don’t have much of a story.