What is Second person point of view?
Second person point of view is a point of view where the narrator is speaking directly to the reader, using pronouns such as “you” and “your”. It is less common than first or third person, but can be effective in creating a sense of immediacy and involvement.
10 Examples of Second person point of view
You are walking down the street, feeling the warmth of the sun on your skin. You pause to admire the beauty of the flowers in the garden, the vibrant colors dancing in the breeze. As you make your way down the street, you can’t help but smile at the world around you.
You hear a voice calling your name, and you turn to find your best friend running to catch up with you. You laugh as you give them a hug, feeling grateful for the joy they bring to your life.
Your heart is pounding as you take a deep breath and step into the interview room. You take a seat and wait patiently, eager to make a good impression.
The bell rings, and you can feel the excitement bubbling up inside of you as you enter the arena. You can hear the cheers of the crowd as you prepare to make your grand entrance.
You take a deep breath and close your eyes, allowing yourself to relax and enjoy the moment. You can feel the warmth of the sun on your skin and the gentle breeze brushing against your face. You open your eyes and smile, feeling grateful for the beauty of life.
You run your hands over the smooth surface of the piano, feeling the music vibrating in your fingertips. You take a deep breath and let your fingers dance over the keys, the notes filling the air with a magical melody.
You take a deep breath and turn the doorknob, feeling a sense of anticipation as you step into the room. You can feel the excitement of the crowd as you make your way to the center of the stage.
You grab your skateboard and kick off, feeling the wind rushing through your hair as you cruise down the street. You can feel the adrenaline coursing through your veins as you pull off an incredible trick.
You take a deep breath and step onto the mat, feeling a rush of determination as you prepare to compete. You can feel the energy of the crowd as you focus on your opponent, ready to take on the challenge.
You take a deep breath and close your eyes, allowing yourself to relax and enjoy the moment. You can feel the warmth of the sun on your skin and the gentle breeze brushing against your face. You open your eyes and smile, feeling grateful for this moment of peace.
Should I use 2nd person POV in my writing?
It can work well for persuasive speeches, or to achieve a sense of intimacy, like the Netflix show YOU. So maybe for essays or oration. But general, it’s hard to pull off in narrative fiction or nonfiction (though it can work great for nonfiction inspirational or motivation!).
For most stories, the reader is not a character that gets involved, so directing it to them wouldn’t make sense – though there are examples of books that “break the fourth wall” and speak directly to readers to involve them. That works if you have a strong vocal narrator, but it’s uncommon and often unlikeable. I’d strongly focus on the actual story and characters first, because it’s unlikely the narrator’s fun and playful self-indulgence will keep your readers’ attentions for long.
20 Famous examples of books written in second person POV
1. Bright Lights, Big City by Jay McInerney
2. Invisible Monsters by Chuck Palahniuk
3. The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera
4. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
5. If On a Winter’s Night a Traveller by Italo Calvino
6. House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski
7. Choose Your Own Adventure books by R.A. Montgomery
8. The Game of Worlds by Jay Lake
9. You by Austin Grossman
10. The Secret History by Donna Tartt
11. The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides
12. Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh
13. The Longest Journey by E.M. Forster
14. Rubyfruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown
15. Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
16. Possession by A.S. Byatt
17. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
18. The Beautiful Bureaucrat by Helen Phillips
19. Reality Boy by A.S. King
20. The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins
PS I feel like this list is wrong but got some help with it… if these are definitely NOT second person POV, leave me a comment!