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Squire

Registered: 12-2004
Location: falkirk
Posts: 596
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POV problems


How late to a story can you introduce different points of view? I have 1 POV for a while, then quite a few.

Just a few generalised answers on stories please, then I might go into more details if I really need more help.

Thanks.

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My Amazon Author Page

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10/2/2008, 8:10 pm Link to this post Email Blitzen   PM Blitzen
 
Firlefanz Profile
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Lady of the Land

Registered: 05-2003
Location: Germany
Posts: 6873
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Re: POV problems


Hard to say. I'd introduce different PoVs early on, so it doesn't surprise the reader. Otherwise, it may become jarring.

I can't say how soon, though. emoticon

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10/3/2008, 8:15 am Link to this post Email Firlefanz   PM Firlefanz Blog
 
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Shepherd

Registered: 03-2006
Posts: 2138
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Re: POV problems


If you are doing a POV change after a long time of only having one, it's probably best to be somewhat obvious about it. Otherwise people might get confused about what is going on, atleast I imagine they might.
10/3/2008, 9:48 am Link to this post Email QS2   PM QS2
 
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Squire

Registered: 12-2004
Location: falkirk
Posts: 596
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Re: POV problems


Yeah, that's what I thought.

My story has 1 POV in the beginning. There is another story, told through flashback. This is from the same character's POV.

After a few days story time, maybe 20k words, my main POV character gets on the Titanic.

After maybe another 30k words the ship begins to sink.

Before the 50 or 60k point, I really don't need other POVs. But once my ship is sinking, I find I want them.

This is too late, right?
Is there anyway to fit these in?

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My Amazon Author Page

[url=]http://dun-scaith.blogspot.com/[My Blog[/url]
10/3/2008, 9:30 pm Link to this post Email Blitzen   PM Blitzen
 
Firlefanz Profile
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Lady of the Land

Registered: 05-2003
Location: Germany
Posts: 6873
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Re: POV problems


I'd say it's too late, yes.

Maybe you need a second or third story arc to bring those other PoV characters into the story before hand.

Good luck! emoticon

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- Firlefanz


10/3/2008, 9:53 pm Link to this post Email Firlefanz   PM Firlefanz Blog
 
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Squire

Registered: 12-2004
Location: falkirk
Posts: 596
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Re: POV problems


Thing is, there are 3 story arcs already, 1 told through flashbacks and 1 through dreams.

I'll have to consider this carefully.

---
My Amazon Author Page

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10/3/2008, 10:15 pm Link to this post Email Blitzen   PM Blitzen
 
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NaNo Winner

Registered: 08-2005
Location: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Posts: 334
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Re: POV problems


I think of The Wheel of Time and The Eye of The World. Robert Jordan went with Rand's point of view for almost the first half of the book.

I'd say that you can introduce new points of view when you need them.

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Reading: Don Quixote - Miguel de Cervantes
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Squire

Registered: 09-2003
Posts: 693
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Re: POV problems


I agree with hadaad. Stephen Donaldson does it in some of the Thomas Covenant books, when Coventant is the POV character for half the book then somebody takes over for the second half.

The thing is, make the break obvious and do it for an obvious reason.

But then, most people disagree with my views on POV. I still think third-person omnicscient is a good way to write, and I've never understood why 'head-hopping' is a bad thing (like anything, it's only bad when done badly). So maybe you shouldn't listen to me emoticon



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Reythia Profile
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Knight of Honor

Registered: 11-2005
Posts: 1883
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Re: POV problems


I don't have a problem with either 'head-hopping' (when done clearly and correctly), or multiple POVs, or 3rd-person omniscient. But I DO have a problem with inconsistency. If you start a book one way, I'd suggest finishing it that way, whatever the 'way' is.

Also, ask yourself what you're adding by gaining these extra POVs. Is it plot-critical? Will the reader CARE what these people are going through, or are they just random "extras"? If you're throwing in extras that the reader won't care about, then you're just going to annoy the reader and make them wonder what's happening to the characters they DO care about. Alternatively, if it's a bit of story about a character the readers like, then maybe it's worth mentioning.

Are you tempted to pop into their heads for a particular reason, or just because you want to show a broader view of the scene than your MC can see? If the latter, then I think you need to rethink your POV to start with and make it more omniscient.

Personally, I would NOT be impressed with a book that sticks with one character for half the book, then jumps around between many. I mean, if the other characters were important enough to hear from during the sinking of the Titanic, why weren't they important enough to hear from beforehand? How can I gauge their reactions if I don't know how they think or act in a more normal situation? I really don't have a preference to a single POV vs many, but I DO have a bias against inconsistency.

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  -- YAR!
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