POV and voice

9 Jan

The writing continues, and I have started to relax already about the process, realizing this is a first draft and it has no obligation to appear anything like the way I envision the final draft appearing. My plan is still to show only human POVs in the final draft, to have the “spirit beings are among us” thing be a discovery the reader makes along with the human characters, however, in terms of POV in the first draft, I am all over the place. Writing from everyone’s POV. Because, for me, it’s the only way to understand how that character ought to behave. I need to be in their head. I can change the POV later.

But there has to be a POV in my writing. The objective/omniscient POV (as opposed to a third-person subjective) is antithetical to my “writing voice,” which always takes on a specific character voice. Doesn’t matter which one; but I need to talk in a character’s voice, keep things limited to each individual’s knowledge and assumptions, because that is part of what I explore in fiction–in real life, there is no “omniscient narrator”; point of view is an inextricable, and to me, fascinating, part of experiencing life, and therefore, of my story-telling.

I am less nervous now as well about briefly adopting the POV of a character that isn’t really part of the story per se, or is a small part of it, just to relay some events in which there are no regular POV characters present.

Another thing I am relaxing on is the way I am pulling prose blurbs into this draft not only from those written in the last year (which pleases me), but from the story I started writing ten years ago which I have referred to elsewhere as “the 1999 story.” I brought this story up before because as I was trying to envision my new story, many bits and pieces I came up with to put in the new story were very, very similar to the old ’99 one and I wanted to “think outside the box” of that story, which I had given up on because it contained too many elements I just didn’t find interesting once I’d started writing.

But I guess there is something in that story that I just need to write, because many of its elements *did* beg to reappear in this new story, and as I write it now, and think “Okay, what can happen next?” I find myself digging up those old blurbs. I do rewrite them to fit the circumstances of the “new” story, but they aren’t being altered drastically. *And* I find myself digging up blurbs that cover characters or story lines from that ’99 story that I rejected when I was envisioning the “new” story in the past year.

I have been in writing mode for a month now, and the word count as of today is 10,997. Not exactly a Nano month, but not bad, either.

5 Responses to “POV and voice”

  1. cornerofmadness January 9, 2010 at 6:41 pm #

    any progress is good. I’m glad you’re relaxing about the pov. THe hardest thing to get thru is when you get tense about your own writing

  2. neshaffer January 9, 2010 at 10:49 pm #

    I’m “relaxing” in the sense that I allowing my expectations to settle to a “first draft” level, but I am still not sure the story is actually going anywhere. I haven’t “found” the story yet, but after a month, I guess I shouldn’t expect to.

  3. cornerofmadness January 10, 2010 at 2:06 am #

    sometimes the story just comes to you (like my most recent nano) others you have to dig about quite a bit first

  4. neshaffer January 10, 2010 at 5:21 pm #

    It’s usually always the latter for me, alas.

  5. cornerofmadness January 10, 2010 at 5:33 pm #

    i hear you. I’ve done 5 nano’s now. the first and this last the story was just boom, right there. the other three, i’m still digging

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