Writing from the “You” Perspective

Writing from the “You” Perspective

With time being today’s most prized commodity, you need to be sure to capture—and hold—your audience’s attention. Generally speaking, the only chance you have to succeed at this is to write from your audience’s perspective.

In other words, you can write all you want about how this or that experience was good/bad/dull/interesting, but you have to escape from the persistent danger of your audience having the all-too-common reaction of “So what?”

Here’s an example of how this works. Let’s say you’re writing a paper about the benefits of owning a pet. Some writers might come up with something like this:

I like my dog. He’s a good dog. He has spots and a tail. He’s fun to be around and he likes to lick my face. I take him out for walkies and he does his job. It makes me happy to have good old Spot the dog as my best friend.

Other (perhaps more proficient) writers might instead write something like this:

They say that dogs are man’s best friend. Well, I think there’s something to that. My dog has been like a member of the family for many years; it’s hard to imagine life without him. Many studies have shown that having pets can add years to one’s life. Having enjoyed Spot’s company all these years, I can understand why. Life’s just better with a good pet.

Note that in the first example, the writer wrote entirely from the “me” perspective: I like my dog, etc. The second example, however, is much more interesting, as it brings a broader perspective. It better answers the question, “Why should I consider getting a pet?” While the first example tells how one person enjoys his pet, the second example is much more persuasive and complete.

So, consider your audience’s point of view. Don’t bore them by being too self-absorbed in your writing. Put yourself in the audience’s place and write from a perspective that will be relevant and interesting to them.