Usually, short stories are written from the first or third person, meaning “I-narration” and “he/she-narration”. You may use “I-narration” if you want your story to sound convincing and “he/she-narration” if you want to detach yourself from the main character, but still be aware of all his thoughts and feelings. If you want your story to be more creative, consider shifting your perspective entirely, and give the responsibility of narration to an unexpected voice.
You may find examples in literature of stories that were conceived to be from the point of view of an animal. This trick allows the narrator to be present but silent, observant and judgmental but immune to judgement themselves. Your feelings about the situation may change too. For example, if you write the story of a robbery in a grocery store from the point of view of a dachshund, the dog might be more interested in the stolen sausages, then in the identity of the thief. On the other hand, you may gift your animal-narrator with exceptional intellect, and watch the story unfurl from yet a new viewpoint. The possibilities are endless!
Sometimes the story will add to the mysteriousness, if your narrator is a passerby. The maid’s perspective of a household scandal, the friend’s perspective of a fishy marriage, the lawyer’s perspective of an unresolved crime. If your professor assigned to write a paper on a historic event, try writing a creative essay from the viewpoint of an ordinary civilian, or a soldier, or a political leader. The perspective shift will allow you to analyze the event more fully and reveal hidden details.
If you were assigned to write about an abstract idea, like globalization, environmental pollution, society or the media, why not turn them into people? You could write about art as if it was a guitar player on the street, proving to the reader that art is indeed misunderstood by many, admired when fancy, free and limitless. Giving features of real people to ideas is a trick of shifting your perspective and learning something new about the phenomenon described, making your conclusions and even taking your first steps in psychology.
You may erase yourself from the story and make the characters do all the talking for themselves. Why not describe the events of your creative story with the help of letters? Unsent letters, diary entries, e-mails, even facebook comments could all work amazingly, if you can fit them in your narrative. A great author will express a person’s character, their background with the word choice, the accuracy, the usage of grammar and spelling, the style.
Why not add spice to your murder mystery story, and tell it from the point of view of the victim? A dead person is omnipresent, and can penetrate in the world of the living where no one else can. It could be also a great idea for a horror story, a thriller, or a humorous piece of writing.