Deep
point of view (DPOV) is the new trend in fiction. This is not to say that all
authors will want to use this style, however, I don’t know why they would not
want to at least infuse a bit of this element into their storytelling. It takes
point of view (POV) to a higher level for the reader. This is true whether the
story is written in first person or third person limited POV.
A
simple POV technique is to take the author into a scene and make sure that the
character doesn’t experience anything outside his scope of his understanding. In
other words, if the character can’t know it, see it, or watch it, the reader
can’t see it or watch it. The reader may know it if the knowledge comes through
another POV character’s viewpoint, but if our main guy is in the dark about
something, he can’t be suddenly enlightened on his own. In other words, Sally
may have already met John in a prior scene. If Walter is with Sally in a scene
where John walks in, and he has never met John, Sally must introduce John
before Walter can refer to him by that name.
Here
is an example from such a scene:
Walter stood, plate in hand, by the buffet
table looking over the delicious offerings of caviar, shrimp, and other delicacies
too numerous to mention.
Sally grabbed his elbow, almost making him
drop the expensive china.
“Walter, it’s him. He’s the one who
invited us here,” she whispered.
“Who?” Walter looked about the room.
The man stood in the midst of the crowded
dining room. “Thank you for sharing this evening with me.” He raised his hand
and the crowd quietened.
Walter sat his plate down on the table. “Who
is he?” He leaned toward Sally.
“John. The rich billionaire I met last
week. I told you about him.”
“Oh, yeah.” Walter slumped forward. “That
guy.”
Now, let’s instill some deep POV magic to our storytelling
elements and see what we can create:
Walter stood, plate in hand, by the buffet
table looking over the delicious offerings of caviar, shrimp, and other delicacies
too numerous to mention. Who in this little town could afford such a spread?
Sally grabbed his elbow, almost making him
drop the expensive china. On his salary, it would take a couple of weeks to
repay the hotel for this single piece of dinnerware.
“Walter, it’s him. He’s the one who
invited us here,” she whispered.
“Who?” Walter looked about the room. Yeah,
he’d admit it. His journalistic curiosity had pressed him into donning his only
suit and tie. The collar of his dress shirt scratched his neck.
The man stood in the midst of the crowded
dining room. “Thank you for sharing this evening with me.” He raised his hand
and the crowd quietened. Who did this over-made-up, makeup-wearing fool think
he was, Jesus on the Mount.
Walter sat his plate down on the table. “Who
is he?” He leaned toward Sally.
“John. The rich billionaire I met last
week. I told you about him.”
“Oh, yeah.” John slumped forward. “That
guy.” The one who bought the paper, the one it was rumored would be sending out
pink slips over the next couple of weeks. Him. Walter kind of wished the guy
was Jesus. Then, maybe John would show Walter a little mercy, and he’d be able
to keep his job.
DPOV deepens the
story. In the first scene, Walter is just a guy at a dinner party. He’s about to meet an unknown fellow Sally met the week before. In the second scene, Walter isn’t
just a guy. He’s a journalist whose curiosity made him pull out his only suit
and tie and wear it to a lavish gathering we can easily assume is out of his
usual element. Then we learn, with Walter, that John could just possibly hold
Walter’s future employment in his hands. The reader isn’t told this. The
information is shown (rather than told) through Walter’s deep POV. Writing such
a scene takes the author into the mind of the character which, when read,
brings the reader deeper into the story.
And if an editor is reading a well-written story, and the POV
takes him or her deeper into the lives of the characters, it will make the
story hard to put down for the editor, who is often an author’s worst critic.
Even if an author feels that a deeper POV isn’t the way to
style a story, when editing, every author should look for those times when a
certain thought from the lead character will add depth and understanding to that
character’s journey.
Let’s do something fun, and I hope the readers will take part. Take the first scene. Provide a DPOV for Walter. With the first scene, the sky is the limit. Walter could be anyone. Sally could be anyone to Walter, and John’s bio is yet to be written. Practice your DPOV and see what you can do with it and post it in the comments. (Remember CBA rules apply).
Happy editing.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Share this post with your friends!

Share This

Share this post with your friends!