Often told as "Third Person Objective" or "Third Person Camera" it is some kind of mixture between cinema and writing. (Crazy stuff, I know.)

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  • What is this Third Person Dramatic?
  • What are his pros and cons?
  • And how to keep up with it without doing anything stupid? like escaping from this kind of narrator by accident.
  • OPTIONAL: Give examples and/or books with this kind of narrator.

No, "dramatic" means you show only actions, you do not describe anybody's thoughts or feelings.

It is related to movies/TV/Plays in that on screen you only see acting, (other than rare exceptions) no narrator tells you Jack is hurt, or angry, or surprised.

3rd person is a standard narrator, Dramatic means the narrator is not omniscient and does not know what the characters are feeling or thinking or their intent or good or evil nature. Such things are only revealed by action or dialogue.

Pros and Cons: It is more difficult to write and get the story across and build character sympathy or identification; the reader never knows for sure of motivations of characters.

I don't know what the pros are, it might be what you lean toward, it keeps you from taking short cuts by just telling us what people think or feel, it may feel more realistic or immersive, like watching a movie.

I don't use it, I use third person limited (the narrator knows the thoughts and feelings of ONE person in the story, all other characters are presented only in action and their dialogue). For the reader, this is more like being the MC.


First and foremost, it an an analytic category. This means it is a category that is used to do literary analysis of existing texts to group different texts according to common features. There are apparently people who find this a diverting exercise. They are not writers.

This particular category means that the narrative is told by an external narrator (not one of the characters) and that they choose to tell the story by relating only that which a bystander might observe, without offering any insight into the thoughts of any of the characters.

In a novel, it combines all the limitations of prose with all the limitations of film, which means it leaves you with an awful lot of limitations. Now, limitations are not necessarily bad for art. The sonnet form is a set of limitations and there are some pretty good sonnets out there. But the novel form is limited enough without imposing further a priori restrictions on yourself.

Could there be a story that is best told strictly as observed by a bystander? Perhaps. But if you have such a story, you should decide that you are going to tell it strictly as a bystander should see it. You should not decide to write it to conform to some category of literary analysis. That is not what the categories of literary analysis are for. They are for the amusement literary analysts (and fodder for the classes of second-rate writing teachers).

Tell your story in the most effective way you can. Let the literary analysis wonks dissect it any way they like. They won't understand it anyway. Their analytical mindset makes it impossible for them to simply receive a story as an experience and enjoy it. They are not happy to watch a bird sing in a tree. They are not happy till the bird lies dead and dissected on the table, and the tree has been chopped into kindling.

Don't try to conform to any category of literary analysis. You might just as well walk around with a noose around your neck and a dagger pointed at your heart.

  • Something like cold scientists reading a book. You have an excelent opinion about that. Even Kingkiller chronicles uses that narrator in moderation with the interludes.
    – Hanilucas
    Dec 7 '17 at 12:44

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