Now Novel Prompt #1

A character is moving to another city. She visits her favourite public place and sees something that makes her want to stay. Describe this in 500 words, using third person POV (he/she). Then rewrite in first person, using ‘I’.

Why: Rewriting third person scenes (especially emotional ones) in first person helps you find your character’s voice.  You’re telling the reader what your character thinks as your character, not an observer. When you rewrite in third person (if you prefer this POV), some of this immediacy will carry over.


Mrs. Jones, the mother of Jeremy Jonathan Jones, Jr. and the wife of J-J Jones, Sr., moved with her son and husband from a small town in western Pennsylvania that nobody ever heard of to Washington, D.C., which everybody heard of.  Decided to visit every monument and museum she could before she got herself too settled in and came to view such things as too “tourist-y.”

Before the family actually packed up and left, however, a certain dread had kept her from really embracing the move.  The voice of the small town girl in her tried to warn her about the dangers of the big city, especially a city where it’s all about power and politics.  And that voice of fear was winning.  She was convinced the move was a mistake.  She worried about what Jeremy would be exposed to in this new, hostile environment.

She went along with the move, but only for J-J Sr’s sake, what with his new job working for the government and all, but she was not going to enjoy it.

Until she did.

The only prior visit she had ever taken to D.C. was when she was in high school, on a school trip, and at the time she could not imagine that there was anything duller in the whole world.  Colonial-this and Civil War-that and the whole place just seemed so in-the-past distant and over and done with.

But that was then.  This time around, with a fresh set of eyes and having a son and a different outlook on the world, so much of all the history and all the culture, and all the different cultures, so much of what she saw meant so much more to her.

“You know,” she told someone about it afterward, “on my high school trip, everything was all planned for us and there was not a whole lot of room for asking questions and I’m a naturally curious, questioning person.  Being able to seek out what I want to see and find out what I want to know, to learn, that has made all the difference.   I like it here.”


I’ll tell you, Jeremy and J-J Sr. were looking forward to moving out here to D.C. but I had my reservations, coming from a small town in western Pennsylvania and all.  That small town girl voice inside my head warned me about Washington and it all being about money and power and the like.  So, yes, I definitely had my reservations, what with the dangers of the city and Jeremy and what he would be exposed to.  I was worried and nervous and filled with a bit of dread,

But I went along with the move, for Sr.’s sake, his new job with the government and the opportunity that presented itself to him.

I wasn’t happy about it but I put on a brave face.

Once we arrived here I thought I would get out and see some of the sights around town before I got too settled in and got to be too much of a local.  It seems like once you live in a place for a while, you never get out and see the things that visitors to your city see, all the attractions and monuments and sights.

I had been here once before, just once, on a class trip with my high school.  That trip was just dreadful.  Everything on that trip was planned and we were rushed along from museum to museum and I could not imagine that there was anything duller in the whole world.  Colonial-this and Civil War-that and the whole place just seemed so in-the-past distant and over and done with.  There was no opportunity to see anything that I might really want to see, just follow the schedule and make sure to keep up.

This time around, though, I was left to my own devices and you know, I was fascinated by what there was to see, really fascinated. Some of the museums show some of the contributions that all the different people, all the different types of people, from different backgrounds and all, made to our country.  I had no idea.

The more I saw, the more I was amazed.  There’s so much history and culture and even Jeremy was hooked after a while.

I’m glad we moved here.

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