Point of View

  • Kerplunk Girl

    Kerplunk Girl (150)

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    Someone asked if there was a thread for tips on and about writing point of view, there isn't one but now there is! :K I'll try my best to give some tips about POV and then you guys can share your opinions, give tips or discuss what POV you write in.

    Okay, so their is mainly four points of view you can write in: First Person, Second Person, Third Person and changing to each character's point of view.

    First Person: Basically having the main character speak and be the narrator during the entire story.
    Wikipedia:
    In a first person narrative, the narrator is a character in the story. This character takes actions, makes judgments and has opinions and biases.
    Ex: I started eating the ice cream, but once it was gone I felt bad.

    Second Person: This is possibly not the most popular POV. Instead of writing as though you are the character, you're writing as though the reader is meant to be the character, kinda like role play.
    Wikipedia:
    Most stories written in second person are probably closer to first-person with "you" replacing "I".
    Ex: You start eating the ice cream and once it's gone you feel sad.

    Third Person: Is basically a narration of the story; the story is being told without biased opinions. Apparently this is the most popular POV to write in since it seems easier to give all the characters' thoughts and emotions.
    Wikipedia:
    In third person limited the narrator is outside of the story and tells the story from only one character's view. The character's thoughts are revealed through the narrator. The reader learns the events of the narrative through the perceptions of the chosen character. Third person limited uses pronouns such as, he, she, they, their, herself, himself, themselves, etc.
    Ex: She ate the ice cream, but after eating it she felt sad.

    Changing points of view: On mibba, this style of writing is probably used the most; it is just changing from one character's thoughts and feelings to another. Although it may be just changing from one character to another, it can also change from First Person to Third Person; you might have a character say their thoughts then before changing to another character you can give a narration. This POV can be very effective if you use it wisely, just changing from character to character isn't very appealing. If you choose to write in this POV you can use it have more effect in flashbacks.

    Ex: I ate the ice cream, but when it was all gone I felt bad. She thought to herself, but little did she know someone was there watching her.

    I watched her eat the ice cream, after it was gone, she stared to look sad. The mysterious boy thought, watching her from a far.

    _

    I tried my best, to read more about it visit this link.

    Okay, now you can all give better tips and talk about what POV you like to write in. :D
    January 24th, 2008 at 05:26am
  • Poirot's Moustache

    Poirot's Moustache (1270)

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    I generally write in changing points of view.

    But I love writing third person. It makes it easier to be detailed and not sound too over the top.
    January 24th, 2008 at 05:49am
  • Rose Red

    Rose Red (400)

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    I mostly stick to one point of view. Personally I prefer first person, because you can get really into the character and describe how he or she feels in great detail.
    January 24th, 2008 at 05:52am
  • Heartswell.

    Heartswell. (400)

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    I have taken the liking to writing in first peron but I originally started to write in third.
    I'm trying out second and it flows very easily to me :D

    I use the method of changing POVs as well but I'm thinking I should try the one point of view way; which is a shame since I kind of tend to rambe a lot and it works better with many point of views as you can use that to create a certain flow to this certain character.
    January 24th, 2008 at 06:01am
  • Rose Red

    Rose Red (400)

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    I have difficulty with multiple points of view... when I write I get really into my character, and it's hard for me to pull myself out of one mode of writing into another. I also kind of like the bit of mystery that sticking to 1st person can do, because if there's a conflict with another character you only see one side of the story, if that makes any sense at all...
    January 24th, 2008 at 06:05am
  • Mrs. Melting Crayons

    Mrs. Melting Crayons (250)

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    Almost anything for me has to be written in first. I just can't get the same depth of feeling and emotion when it's not the person talking. I just...can't. I marvel at the people who can make third person sound good.

    I don't really like changing POV's...the only time I do it is in joint stories. It's just annoying to have ~Frank's POV~ at the top of a section, then have people wondering whose it really is when it switches again.
    January 24th, 2008 at 01:25pm
  • Spaztastic

    Spaztastic (640)

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    Depends on the story I'm writing - what the plot is.
    Most of my stories are first person, because I like the opinoins I can put in with that. I don't always like saying, he thought. I also tend to ramble (like what's going on inside their head. We all know we ramble when we think) as I tell a story.

    If I'm writing in third person, that's because I want to get all the character's view on the subject.

    However, two of my chaptered stories are told in second person. Blank Generation is told in second because Leslie is telling her story of the 1970's, basically, to anyone who will listening. Sort of like an autobiography. You know how they always address their readers? Yeah, that's what this story is like.
    The Blackest Years is sort of second person. 'You' is a character, but 'you' is actually within the story - it's the prison guard. She basically talking to him within her head, saying things like I know what you're thinking. or You keep looking at me. That's for effect.

    However, I never change PO Vs within a story. It's always one all the way through.
    January 25th, 2008 at 05:11am
  • Mindfreak.

    Mindfreak. (400)

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    I used to love changing POV's, but I currently love writing one POV, in first person. (:
    January 25th, 2008 at 05:34am
  • kafka.

    kafka. (150)

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    What exactly are the differences between POV and narrative perspective ? I think -notice the think part- that perspective is more than just about the person of the verbs/pronouns, and more about how much of the story you see, is that correct ?

    Just wanted to add that for a story to be in 1st, 2nd or 3rd person POV the main character needs to be addressed to with a 1st, 2nd or 3rd person pronoun, it's not enough to mention a 2nd person pronoun or to give the impression of orallity (sp?) -the sense that you're telling the story to someone-, technique that's used in most stories and fairy tales -real life I mean-.
    And apropos the 2nd person perspective is characteristic for modern and post-modern novels, Italo Calvino's If on a winter's night a traveler is beautiful.

    I've done all points of view in stories -separate stories, not a big fan of changing POV-, but I think recently I'm most fond of 1st. Second works for me if I'm trying something playful, fresh, while 3rd if I'm working with solid plot-line.
    People writing ''Mr X's POV" at beginnings of stories make me want to shot someone. It's one of the worst things you can do to stories.
    I'm also not the biggest fan of changing POV. Now it depends what you mean by changing, if you mean from 1st to 3rd or whatever, I clearly don't really like it, not even in real life. But if you mean that the narrator is different character in each chapter, that I sortof like, depends on how it's done. If it's necessary and if it adds a certain je-ne-sais-quoi to the story it's beautiful, if it's done just because the author can't decide who's emo drama to follow, I hate it.
    I think that would be my conclusion, you should use POV wisely and it should be in tune with your story and its subject.
    January 25th, 2008 at 01:43pm
  • folie a dru.

    folie a dru. (1270)

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    I try not to change POV very often if at all in a story now.
    I detest when the POV changes with each paragraph.
    I prefer third person, but I also like first.

    I always thought second-person was told through the eyes of a person who was just a supporting character?
    January 25th, 2008 at 08:20pm
  • Spaztastic

    Spaztastic (640)

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    Well..that could be second. As long as 'you' is a character. Like, a supporting character could refer to the main character as 'you'.

    Text books generally write in second person.
    January 25th, 2008 at 11:08pm
  • The Brightside

    The Brightside (500)

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    I wrote my first story using second person the other day - and loved it.

    I think most of my older stories are in first, but my newer stories are in third.
    January 26th, 2008 at 02:05am
  • The Way

    The Way (1400)

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    I find first person hard to do unless it's comedic. I can pull it off in rare occasions, but I find it constricting if my descriptions doesn't suit the characters vocab and personality.

    Mostly, I write third person bordering on first person. It's omniscient, but personal too.

    And some people find it hard, but I love second person. Smiley
    January 26th, 2008 at 01:56pm
  • kafka.

    kafka. (150)

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    druscilla; deceased.:
    I always thought second-person was told through the eyes of a person who was just a supporting character?
    No, it's rare but in some books the main character is referred to in second person. Like in Italo Calvino's book the main character is actually the reader and it's referred to as you.
    To be a certain POV the majority of the verbs/pronouns need to be in at that person, 1st for 1st person POV, 2nd for 2nd person POV and 3rd for 3rd. The majority counts.

    But maybe I'm wrong. Dunno that what I know from literature class and that's how we talk about books at school, though we also classify them in subjective and objective perspective, so maybe it's different ...
    January 26th, 2008 at 02:32pm
  • The Way

    The Way (1400)

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    ^^Yeah, I htink 2nd person is one told from someone living in the character's head, therefore using 'you.'
    January 26th, 2008 at 02:36pm
  • kafka.

    kafka. (150)

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    ._.
    What my dear ?
    It's late, please explain. Living the the character's head ?
    January 26th, 2008 at 02:39pm
  • The Way

    The Way (1400)

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    'You blink your tears back.

    You can't believe this is happening.

    Your light, your love, your anthem... is gone.'

    ^^Like that.
    Like... the narrator is living in the character's head, narrating how she/he feels and what she/he sees.
    January 26th, 2008 at 02:46pm
  • Seventh

    Seventh (150)

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    think of second person as someone talking to the main character, telling them what they're doing and feeling etc.
    a bit like a hypnotist. he's got his subject in a trance, now he's telling him what he's 'doing' and 'feeling':

    "You're sat on a beach in the sun. you're very warm so you're taking off your coat and stretching out. you feel happy, content. today is a good day."

    i have a pet love of subjective third-person. where my narrator is sorta.. sat on the shoulder of ONE character, and can see into HIS head, but only make edcuated guesses [from body language, tone of voice etc] about what all the other characters are thinking and feeling.

    i occasionally swap whose shoulder the narrator is sat on, but i try not to do it too often [ a chapter per POV, MAYBE one clearly separated switch in the middle of a chapter] as jumping around into lots of people's heads can get confusing.

    one minute the narrator is musing on 'he felt embarrassed' and then in the next sentence he's saying 'he felt a surge of anger flow through him' - it's disjointed and makes no sense.

    if you stick to ONE person you can still say the same thing: "X shifted uncomfortably, flushing with embarrassment, and Y felt a surge of anger flow through him." but now i know who is feeling what much more clearly.

    so yeah, basically, i dislike omniscient third-person POVs. i find them messy and confusing when they go on longer than a short story. the over-the-shoulder technique is, for me, the simplest, most effective third-person way to write. [but that's just my opinion *shrugs*]
    January 26th, 2008 at 02:59pm
  • kafka.

    kafka. (150)

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    But if it's you, it's not me. I mean if the narrator is looking at story from inside the character wouldn't it be more likely and normal to use 1st or even third person ?

    I do understand what you're saying, that the narrator is omniscient and knows everything about the you character, but the living inside the head thing puzzles me.
    January 26th, 2008 at 02:59pm
  • The Way

    The Way (1400)

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    ^^I mean if the narrator is looking at story from inside the character wouldn't it be more likely and normal to use 1st or even third person?

    which is why people find it hard to pull off.
    but it's a style i like to use.
    January 26th, 2008 at 03:03pm