One of the most important questions a writer must ask when telling a story is to ask through whose eyes will my reader learn of my story? Clearly, one of the key aspects of a story is that it is told in a trustworthy, interesting and engaging manner; it is important, therefore, to create a narrator that fulfils these three key requirements. There are two main choices of 'narrative viewpoint':

First person narrative
This viewpoint uses the pronouns 'I' or 'we' to tell the story. Frequently, the narrator is who the story is about - the protagonist, but it could be any character within the story. A difficulty of 'first person perspective' is that the reader can only know the thoughts of the narrator; equally, such narrators are restricted in where they can be and in what and who they can know. This makes a first-person narrative somewhat more difficult to tell; however, such stories can be highly effective because the reader can more easily relate to the 'I' who is telling the story. Also, through the use of dialogue, other viewpoints can be introduced. An important consideration when you are analysing such a story is how the narrator becomes trustworthy and believable - and how reliable they are and what this means to the story.

Third person narrative
This viewpoint uses the pronouns 'he', 'she' or 'they' to tell the story. The story appears to be being told by the writer, but it needn't be so. Also the narrator can be created so as to be what is called 'omniscient' or 'all-knowing'; here, he or she seems to know about every character and every place, being able to move around at will - like an 'all-seeing' eye'; alternatively, and very commonly, the narrative voice can be 'limited-third person'; here, the narrator is biased to one of the character's - usually the protagonist. This latter viewpoint is very close to 'first person' narrative. Once again, an important consideration when discussing a story is how the third person narrator builds a sense of trust and believability.