How to Write in Second Person

Updated July 25, 2017

Write "you" and "your" instead of "he," "she," "his," "her," "I," "me" and "my" when referring to the main character or characters in your story. The reader is the protagonist, or taking on the persona of the protagonist, in a second person narrative.

Use the understood you when giving directions in second person. "Turn on the light" is a second person statement, as the word "you," although not stated, is the subject of the sentence.

Encourage your reader's participation by asking him questions. Interactive fiction is a form of fiction written this way, as the reader is the protagonist and is able to make decisions throughout the story. Second person narrative is also used this way in many text-based and even graphically-based role-playing video games, as the gamer must make decisions that affect his game.

Give the reader a persona to which she can relate. Write your story or narrative in a way that the protagonist's actions are not controversial and can be justified by the majority of readers. The second person narrative can only work if the reader agrees with what she is reading she is doing.

bibliography-icon icon for annotation tool Cite this Article

About the Author

This article was written by the Sciencing team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about Sciencing, contact us here.