Deep Point of View

Deep point of viewLong ago I mentioned that one of my interests was immersive writing. This is the reason I read. That complete escape where you are so lost in the story you forget someone wrote it. The author disappears. You find yourself lost on a hidden beach in the Philippines with a group of young travellers. Or falling for a limping, toothless torturer because he’s the only one you’ve met on the journey that seems to know where he’s going.

I want to provide that for my readers. I want you to get as lost in my stories as I do writing them. I know my characters and my world because I’ve lived in it a lot longer than the reader gets to. So what magic could I use to ensure I take you on the page to where I go in my head?

The answer is (or at least one of them) deep point of view.

Point of View (POV) is simply the point of view from which you tell the story.

In the examples above it’s from the young man on the beach – we follow his story, his view of the world.

In other stories it could be from several character’s points of view.

The main point is that we can only see or experience the world as that character does.

Deep Point of View takes that a step closer and removes the author completely. We don’t just know what that character is experiencing we feel it with them.

This tool allows a greater connectivity to the character; it helps the reader understand the character better. It provides an immersive reading experience by use of smoother writer; in that it removes many of the filter words.

 

I came across this example recently of deep point of view:

“This is hell,” muttered Shev, peering over the brink of the canyon. “Hell.” Rock shiny-dark with wet disappeared into the mist below, water rushing somewhere, a long way down. “God, I hate the North.”

“Somehow,” answered Javre, pushing back hair turned lank brown by the eternal damp, “I do not think God is listening.”

“Oh, I’m abundantly aware of that. No one’s bloody listening.”

“I am.” Javre turned away from the edge and headed on down the rutted goat-track beside it with her usual mighty strides, head back, heedless of the rain, soaked cloak flapping at her muddy calves. “And, what is more, I am intensely bored by what I am hearing.”

“Don’t toy with me, Javre.” Shev hurried to catch her up, trying to find the least boggy patches to hop between. “I’ve had about as much of this as I can take!”

(“Two’s Company” copyright © 2016 by Joe Abercrombie – on Tor.com)

Notice the lack of filter words and telling us how the characters feel about their situation. Even from a few short lines we get a very clear idea of how Shev feels about her environment. A deep point of view shows us clearly how the character sees and feels about the world around them, and those in it. And so we are there with them.

How could you help the reader better understand your characters with deep point of view?

 

Useful reading:

Rivet Your Readers with Deep Point of View – Jill Elizabeth Nelson

Rebecca Zanetti blog – Deep Point of View

Fiction Writing Tools blog – 5 ways to write deep point of view

Kristen Lamb’s Blog – Deep POV part 1