Writing – POV

This week’s session with Anne Aylor covered Point Of View (POV).   The three POV categories are First Person  (In general draws the reader closer to the character), Second Person (rarely used in novels) and Third Person (creates a little distance between reader and character).  However there is more to POV. The first and third persons have further subcategories, namely:

First Person Protagonist

First Person Witness

First Person Re-Teller

Third Person Omniscient (or God)

Third Person Objective

Third Person Limited

 As an exercise we wrote a story for 10 minutes in one POV, then rewrote the same story in another POV, and compared both. I wrote about a police detective arriving at a crime scene, first in Third Person POV (3POV) then in First Person POV (1POV).  Both I and a fellow student thought the 1POV version was better.  The 3POV was more like a report, whereas the 1POV contained all the 3POV information plus how the detective felt on seeing the uniformed police had already arrived and how he felt on being asked to produce his ID.

On reflection I think that if I had written the 1POV first, I then would have had to find a way of adding the detective’s feelings in the 3POV (for example through dialogue).   The 3POV version might have been better (for example dialogue may make it easier to show rather than tell).

An experienced author, writing in 3POV, would be able to incorporate such 1POV aspects into his or her first draft.  But I wonder if it might be good idea for a novice writing in 3POV to produce a first draft in 1POV.

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