First off, my intent in using these approaches is not to mystify my readers. My agent once said to me, “I know you thought no one would `get’ this in your story but I understood what you were up to.” I wrote back that if I thought no one would get it, I wouldn’t have put it in there. There’s no purpose for an author deliberately making things obscure. What I am trying to do is show the way things really seem to me — and to find the most appropriate way to tell the particular story I have to tell. I certainly never sit down and say to myself, “Gee, I think I’ll tell a story in the first person or third person.” Some stories simply seem to need a first-person narrator, others are dream stories, another might require a third person narrator. What I try to do is find the narrative approach that is most appropriate to the subject matter.

Gene Wolfe
Interview with Larry McCaffery, November 1988