Friday, May 6, 2011

Point Of View

Choosing the point of view (pov) for a novel can involve some difficult choices. Almost everything I've written has been in third-person omniscent; it gives you so much more lattitude. Limited third-person omniscent can give you quite a bit of room to maneuver, too. But nothing beats first-person--for the writer as well as for the reader--for immediately identifying with a character. But the limitations of first-person are many.

What are the advantages of third-person omniscient? The story can be seen through the eyes of any of the characters at any time. In first person, you can't very well see the story from any other character's pov, not without many limitations.

To some degree, plot determines pov. For example, a story I'm working on right now, started out in first-person, but I've come to realize that it won't work for the plot of the novel. Other people's povs, without the protagonist in the chapter, must occur later in the novel. Now I've got to rewrite what I've done. Fortunately, I'm very early in the story, so it's not a problem. But, I hate to change the pov, because I'm losing the instant identification with the protagonist that I've felt. But a writer does what he has to do. The overall story comes first. I'll try to figure out a way to keep it in first person before making the change, but keeping it may be too difficult.
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