Point of View in a Novel

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updog
 
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Re: Point of View in a Novel

Postby updog » Sat Dec 01, 2012 2:00 pm

louiseh87 wrote:I've not watched the TV series because I don't care enough to pay for it (I don't have Sky and I'm not buying it on DVD) and object morally to watching pirate copies (which I'm convinced is how most people are watching it because no one I know pays for Sky).


I bought the DVDs because I won't pay for TV either. If everyone in my family watches them, it's way cheaper than going to a movie. Down side is that season two isn't even available until March of 2013. Right when the rest of the world is getting ready for season 3. (Not that big a deal, since I have the books and already know what happens. Hee,hee.)

Starchaser3000
 
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Re: Point of View in a Novel

Postby Starchaser3000 » Sat Dec 01, 2012 3:27 pm

I like the dark edginess in Game of Thrones. But I perfectly understand why that would put some people off. Still based on the more familiar TV series, we can probably agree that at least the acting is better than any TV fantasy series in recent memory. I would actually be OK if it could tone down the edginess in exchange for more action battle scenes. Anyway, back on topic.

What I should have mentioned earlier that whatever my criticism is of Game of Thrones, I like the multiple POV character voicing thing. Even if a writer had 10 different POVs in a story somehow, if he/she eliminated all the continuity issues, then they should be commended IMO. Even if it meant that it would still confuse or baffle most readers, if nobody can prove any technical continuity and/or plot contradiction problems, then job well done.

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louiseh87
 
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Re: Point of View in a Novel

Postby louiseh87 » Sat Dec 01, 2012 4:31 pm

Starchaser3000 wrote:I like the dark edginess in Game of Thrones. But I perfectly understand why that would put some people off. Still based on the more familiar TV series, we can probably agree that at least the acting is better than any TV fantasy series in recent memory. I would actually be OK if it could tone down the edginess in exchange for more action battle scenes. Anyway, back on topic.

What I should have mentioned earlier that whatever my criticism is of Game of Thrones, I like the multiple POV character voicing thing. Even if a writer had 10 different POVs in a story somehow, if he/she eliminated all the continuity issues, then they should be commended IMO. Even if it meant that it would still confuse or baffle most readers, if nobody can prove any technical continuity and/or plot contradiction problems, then job well done.


I do agree that the multiple POV is done very well. I remained interested in all the POV characters (which was part of the problem eventually).

For it done badly, in my opinion anyway, I recommend The Last Dragonlord. It jumps about all over the place.
Louise :)

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markb287
 
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Re: Point of View in a Novel

Postby markb287 » Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:25 am

Multiple points of view is neither bad nor good. No idea in writing is. What's bad or good is whether or not you can pull it off in a way that engages the reader and pushes the story along. But don't put two POVs just because it sounds like a good idea. You should only do it if it helps you tell the story better.

The biggest issue you'd have to work through is tying the points of view together. One thing that I really like in Gotye's "Somebody That I Used to Know" is that he utilizes two POVs, showing two different stories of the situation. With novels and short stories, we are in a sense blinded by the narrator's point of view, taking what he or she says as reality. Providing two POVs allows you the opportunity to show your character's vulnerabilities, the weaknesses in his or her perception, thus humanizing him or her. It also allows the reader to piece the "real" story together himself. Almost like the Rashomon effect.

But if you're just giving two POVs just to give them, then this effect is ruined.

Luke
 
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Re: Point of View in a Novel

Postby Luke » Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:50 am

aspiring_writer wrote:Is there anything wrong with having two first person points of view in a novel?


Nothing wrong with it. Al long as it works.

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TerryRodgers
 
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Re: Point of View in a Novel

Postby TerryRodgers » Mon Dec 03, 2012 2:48 pm

aspiring_writer wrote:Is there anything wrong with having two first person points of view in a novel? I was thinking of writing my novel in first person with both of my main characters but in alternating chapters. For example, in one chapter it would be in first person point of view with the female character and in the next chapter it will be in first person point of view with the male character. I am going to write mostly from the female character's perspective but I think that it would be beneficial and it would help move the story along to write it from the male character's perspective every now and then. Is that too much or is that generally okay to do?


A majority of the novels written today from the Thriller genre are written with multiple POVs. It opens the novel up to more feelings as I believe I know all of the main characters. It's not hard to do either. Just have a section break or new chapter. Two of my favorite authors, James Rollins and Steve Berry do this very well. James uses section breaks and will have two sometimes more POVs in each chapter. Steve does it this was too, but tends to use more chapter breaks. Both have five to ten POVs in their novels and it's not hard to follow and they do not confuse the reader. Both are very good at what they do and it's how I've modeled my writing.

Having two POVs in first person would definitely be harder. I would use chapter breaks for this challenge. I would think you have to identify the person speaking within the first sentence. If that's possible. :D

isl31910
 
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Re: Point of View in a Novel

Postby isl31910 » Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:14 am

A lot of the YA books that I read have multiple points of view, from first person. I tend to enjoy first person better than third, and by having multiple points of view, I can get inside the head of more than one character. I like this.

Most times I see the author break up the points of view into new chapters and each chapter is simply numbered and the name of the person narrating is at the top.
:D

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Linton Robinson
 
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Re: Point of View in a Novel

Postby Linton Robinson » Fri Dec 07, 2012 8:24 pm

You can have HUNDREDS of points of view in a novel. As many as you can handle.
Haven 't you seen this in novels you've read?

That whole "you might confuse the reader" thing is another example of "non-selling expert" advice that gets rumored around, not real-world advice.

The solution to not confusing the reader is to write clearly and with enough direction to keep them around. That whole tendancy to write off anything as "confusing" is a shameful sneer at the intelligence of your readers, if you think about it a little.

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DrG2
 
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Re: Point of View in a Novel

Postby DrG2 » Tue Dec 11, 2012 10:37 pm

Linton Robinson wrote:You can have HUNDREDS of points of view in a novel. As many as you can handle.
Haven 't you seen this in novels you've read?

That whole "you might confuse the reader" thing is another example of "non-selling expert" advice that gets rumored around, not real-world advice.

The solution to not confusing the reader is to write clearly and with enough direction to keep them around. That whole tendancy to write off anything as "confusing" is a shameful sneer at the intelligence of your readers, if you think about it a little.


talk to agents or editors or post work that has multiple POV on writers workshops, and you might change your tune. apparently readers are idiots, because they have trouble when an author uses more than one POV in a chapter. Dickens would have a hard time getting published. A shame.

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Linton Robinson
 
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Re: Point of View in a Novel

Postby Linton Robinson » Wed Dec 12, 2012 2:08 am

Actually, I talk to agents and editors all the time.

But what is more effective...and what I continually suggest and stress... is to look at successful published books as the ultimate guide.

There is absolutely no evidence that readers "have trouble" with multiple POV's. And considering readers to be idiots is not a very good way to approach building readership.

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