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Writer's Workshop- Writing 101 > POV- Point of View

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message 1: by Rachel (new)

Rachel (velliya) | 441 comments Mod
Perspective can determine the whole storyline of a book. It allows the author to be picky about what the characters and the audience knows.
So there are may different types of POV's but I focas of the three main ones:
~First person
~Second Person
~Third Person

First person is usually written in the eyes of the protagonist. By writing in this POV, an author can create a deeper relationship between the Reader and the Character. We always know what they are thinking, what they want to do, and how they will act towards a situation. This relationship establishment is particularly popular in Paranormal Romances, Young Adult and Dystopian. Eg, the Hunger Games

This viewpoint also adds mystery and suspense about the other characters as we have no access to their mind, thoughts and emotions, other than what the protagonist tells us. It can be extremely affective when used in a story line containing something very new to the protagonist and the reader.

Here is my example of a FP POV:


(This is an extract that I've used elsewhere in this Folder)

"What are you?" I asked Liam, scared as Hell. He stared at me with his big red eyes, his mouth drooling with the blood of the female victim that lay lifeless at his feet.I had just seen him suck her dry, no hesitation. Nothing. He started towards me and I scrambled back. "Get away from me, Liam!"
But he continued on, his footsteps making more sound on the footpath than they should have, the sound almost seemed to echo throughout the dark empty street. "Let me explain." He said, grabbing my hand before I could run. I tried to shake him loose but his grip was like iron.
I cowered under his gaze. he wiped the blood from his face and smiled. Usually that was the smile that had comforted me after breakups or made me crack up in Maths class, but now, that smile looked like that a sadistically minded creep and I would have screamed had he not covered my mouth. "I have a couple of things to tell you, Elle. some things that you wouldn't believe." he whispered it in my ear, making it all the most terrifying, the blood on his lips wafted to my nose and made me sick.

I didn't know much about what was happening, but I knew one thing. My best friend was a Vampire. A blood sucking Vampire.

See how we can only understand things from what Elle knows and what Elle can understand in her traumatic state? Using this technique, you can use suspense as your friend and finish with many unanswered questions.
This is probably the easiest POV to write in and many first timers use this style.

This is the least used of all due to the fact that it is so awkward to write in, and therefore, more difficult. This style is mainly used in short stories because it is a powerful POV to be using because it is so engaging for the reader and the mystery is insanely cool.(If you have a talent for writing in this POV, it is definitely a skill to use frequently)
To be writing constantly in this POV can be confusing but definitely intriguing.

You sit there, your long hair flowing in the gentle breeze as we sit on your roof. Each strand is carried by the wind, into the moonlight where it shines with divine luminescence.Fire in the dying light of the stars.

"What are you looking at?" You ask, eyes big bright as you laugh. "The world spans all around you, and yet, you look at me. Why waste your time when you could marvel at the beauty of the Earth?" Little do you know that you are my world and your beauty far surpasses that of the land around us.

"I have lived since the dawn of time." I tell you. "But nothing has ever made me think about what matters more than you. I will be here in one thousand years and remember the conversation that we share right now, each and every word. Because time works differently to me, I know this world, I've seen this boring place a million times. But you," I pause to look into your glowing face. "You light up my world with just a single word. You brighten the sky with a smile. Whenever I lay my eyes on you, it's like I see you for the first time all over again, but with guilt. I look at you with the eyes of a sinner, knowing that you will forgive me whenever I do you wrong. But you never do me any wrong.Why would someone as perfect as you stay with a bastard like me?"

You laugh again, blushing uncontrollably, and take my hand. "You listen." You whispered to me. "You make me smile and around you, I can be myself. That is why I stay."
I bring your hand to my lips and kiss it once. "So you forgive me for everything I've done?" I ask.
"Nobody's perfect, not even you." You smile at my chuckle and lay your head on my shoulder. I wish that I could pause time, I wish that we could live forever in this moment.
"I love you." You whisper, I can her you drifting away.
"I love you too." I whisper back, but you're already asleep.

This is my favourite perspective, I love it! (sorry! I do!) This is where the author writes like they are just a bystander recording the situation. Sometimes, the bystander may flitter in and out of people's heads, hearing their thoughts then moving on to the next character. I mainly stays within the story of the protagonist but can venture to different story lines between chapters or even paragraphs.

Eg. (this is my short story entry, I wasn't bothered to write something new. Sorry!)

The mother clasped her hands together, making sure that what was hidden inside them could not be seen by the small girl on her lap. Though she tried to open her mother's hands, they would not budge. "Why won't you show me, Mama? I can keep your secret!" The child pledged, but her mother only laughed. It was a joyous laugh, it reminded the girl of snuggling up next to a fire and it filled her with warmth. "I'm sure you can, my dear. But what I hold in my hands is something that I've developed over a long time. Something that will never fade."
"Is it beautiful?" The child asked, whispering because it was Mama's secret.
Mama nodded. "It is."
"What's her name?" Trust a child's innocence to personify anything it doesn't understand.
"Her name is Imagination. She is the most wonderful thing, she's taken me to foreign lands, she's helped me see and create some of the most beautiful things."
The child sat in awe. How could such a small thing do so much? "Can I have an imagination?" She asked, staring at her mother's hands with longing.
"Only if you promise to never forget about her and to always let her grow, no matter how old you become. Do you promise this, child?" Her mother asked.
The child nodded, "My Imagination will be the biggest and most beautiful of all!"
The mother laughed again, "Will you share her?" "With everyone." The child nodded, it was a vow that she always would remember.
"Very well, my dear. Close your hands like mine. Now close your eyes. Do you remember the stories I told you? Of fairies and kings and dragons? Think of all of them, treasure them, and promise to never let them go. Think of what you'd do if you were them." The child began giggling as thoughts ran through her innocent mind. Closed eyed, she looked completely happy.
The mother smiled. "Open your eyes,child." The girl obeyed, smiling excitedly. "Now open your hands." She did so and gasped in surprise. In her palms was a small glowing ball of luminous dust. "This is your Imagination, child. Soon it will grow and light up your world forever." "It's a little like Magic, isn't it Mama?"
"No, my wonderful daughter, it's not like Magic, it's so much better."

I'd love to hear what POV you guys use, and your ideas on them! :)

Althea *Go wolves and dragons!*(Coach Hedge) Inigo (eiyah_fantasyfreak) | 57 comments Hmm...I love first person and third. The first person helps you see in the eyes of the character and get to know them more.

But, the third person lets you see anything, it can switch from one character story to another.

The second person is quite...confusing, as you said.

message 3: by Rachel (new)

Rachel (velliya) | 441 comments Mod
Yeah, I tend to use Third the most, hence my obsession :P

ᑕᗢᗝᒪḰᓮᖙᖇᗢჯ123 ☆*・゜゚・*\(^O^)/*・゜゚・*☆ Cool (coolkidrox123) | 115 comments ive treid useinf first person but i usally find myself drifting into thrid. i disagree with you when you say its the easyiest.

second person i love very much. its as though the story is about YOU and its like YOUR the character!! i first ecncountered 2nd person in the book 'if on a winter's night a travler' wow!! taht book took my breath away!! but 2nd person is SO HARD to read!! i just couldnt finish the book!!

3rd person is the one i yse and prefer. the story that i am writting is in 3rd....only in the POV of sertain characters like in the lost hero and the son of neptune.... it just...let you see the story in more than one POV.

what i think:

if you have one main character and their thoughts is all that really matters, use 1st

if you want tto confuse people and make the story as if they were the characters, use 2nd

if you ahve more than one main character adn the story is too compliacated to do in only one person's POV then use this one

message 6: by L (new)

L Personally i prefer to write in first person, and see the world through the main characters eyes. It is easier in some ways to write as if you are the character, as it flows a lot better and is a more innate way to look at writing a novel.
Third person is a lot harder as it requires much more observation on what is happening and description, however you have to be careful when balancing the amount of description, speech and action as to not make it too lengthy or become dull. My novel that i am working on is third person and although it is tough i would rather write it like this than as say first person, because there is not just one particular main character as such- hence it would not work.

message 7: by Rachel (new)

Rachel (velliya) | 441 comments Mod
Yeah same with me Lucinda! My two books are written in third person become there is more than one main character :)

message 8: by L (new)

L Rachel wrote: "Yeah same with me Lucinda! My two books are written in third person become there is more than one main character :)"

Just because it is harder than writing in first person (or atleast i think so), does not mean that it is impossible & your hard work and dedication will shine through! x

message 9: by Ivy (new)

Ivy (iwanttocrawlintobookslivethere) | 13 comments In all my attempts to write in second person I usually fail miserably. I have to say I use first person the most but I've been practicing in third person lately and I think I've fallen in love. I've been playing with this one idea in third person but the book I'm writing right now is first person... In some ways third person is easier but in other ways first person is. :P If you understand what I'm saying or if I'm just rambling nonsense!

ᑕᗢᗝᒪḰᓮᖙᖇᗢჯ123 ☆*・゜゚・*\(^O^)/*・゜゚・*☆ Cool (coolkidrox123) | 115 comments i never tried 2nd.

i try..i really do try..useing 1st but..EVERY THINGLE TIME i find myself writting in 3rd and then i remeber to write in 1st then i switch by acceident to 3rd again then the story makes no sence

Ice Queen Wanderer •The Cursed Prophetess• (ari-la) | 45 comments Finally someone explained to me what second is! It looks awsome. I love first, but whenever I do it, I give up, cause my charaters either sound stupid, or I don't like them.

ᑕᗢᗝᒪḰᓮᖙᖇᗢჯ123 ☆*・゜゚・*\(^O^)/*・゜゚・*☆ Cool (coolkidrox123) | 115 comments i think its easier cause more used to it..but problem is...when youdoing 3rd POV you tend to forget that its in teh POV of a certain charcter...(well..i do)

message 13: by Brigid ✩ (new)

Brigid ✩ I usually tend to write in first person, past tense––sometimes in first person, present tense. I occasionally write in third person, past tense ... I've never tried third person, present tense. I have written one novel partly in second person, but that's something I probably won't ever do again ... It just suited the one particular story. ;)

message 14: by Rachel (new)

Rachel (velliya) | 441 comments Mod
True, second person is usually only effective when used in a particular way. Tthat's why it it mainly seen in letters or dreams in novels

I never really write in present tense, I prefer past tense, I don't know why, it just feels more realistic and flowing. :)

message 15: by Brigid ✩ (new)

Brigid ✩ Yeah, I understand ... I know a lot of people who won't even touch present tense because they hate it so much. :P I don't really get it, but to each his own. Sometimes present tense just seems to naturally fit the story, for me.

message 16: by L (new)

L POV- 3 types.

* First-person
* 3rd- close or observer

'I' is replaced with the character's name or a pronoun. With 'close' you get to see both the protagonists point of view and also the antagonists. You can go into more depths and look at other characters than just the main one.

(i.e. As Mord decided to sit down with the other members of court, she carefully chose a spot in which to overhear the Duke's conversation with Lord Emmet. Underneath the relentless bable and laughter that filled the entire hall, an important question arose that startled the Duke into submission by his interigator.
"My Lord i am no doubt that the King of Spain will attack, as his plans at Wethertop also included passing through those boudaries between Dwent and Marend. You must surely be aware of his intentions?!"
At this sudden revelation Duke Geldar rose from his seat with a most pained expression upon his face, that had been drained of all color as i waited for the inevitable anger that would soon flood out...

(sorry, poor example)

Here the writer is more distant as you watch everything from afar. Being more aloof this is ideal for having more than one or two main characters, as you look at everyone as a whole.
So they did that, names of people and things etc.

and 3rd POV-

Narrators voice in background. You are the narrator of your own story. Less common and hard to do and maintain!

message 17: by Sarah (new)

Sarah  (Oceanwhisper) Third person definitely ;) But I might attempt a first-person or second-person soon, after NaNoWriMo :)

ᑕᗢᗝᒪḰᓮᖙᖇᗢჯ123 ☆*・゜゚・*\(^O^)/*・゜゚・*☆ Cool (coolkidrox123) | 115 comments one of my fav books is 'if on a winter's night a travler' and thats in 2nd. it was AMAZING book but hard to read

message 19: by Alde (new)

Alde Baron (alde_baron) | 3 comments I write in third person for fiction. Since I write comedy, it's easier to take that perspective. It's hard for most people to watch someone laugh at themselves; you know, like someone telling a joke and laughing at it while they speak? Takes all the fun away!

First person I use for non-fiction writing. This too is comedy. It's more so me talking to the audience, and the only use of dialogue is to illustrate examples.

I think the toughest part most new authors have with first person is that most people don't think and observe as much as a third person view might. In first person, it's all about the character's goals, and what they're focused on. Third person, we see the action unfold, even if the character can see it or not.

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