1. Magnatolia
    Offline

    Magnatolia Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    28

    Am I jumping POV in the same paragraph?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Magnatolia, Apr 13, 2014.

    Hi guys,

    I'm going through what I wrote last night to tighten my prose, and the first thing was to get rid of unnecessary uses of the word 'saw'.

    I have: Thomas watched as Clair turned away from him. Saw the anguish in her eyes in that moment. It broke his heart. He saw her hurry to the other side of the room.

    Change to: Thomas watched as Clair turned away from him. The anguish in her eyes broke his heart (good so far). She hurried to the other side of the room (this last sentence to me feels like I've jumped into her head, or am I mistaken?)

    Thanks!
     
  2. GingerCoffee
    Offline

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    17,605
    Likes Received:
    5,879
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    You have two threads on the same thing?
     
  3. Magnatolia
    Offline

    Magnatolia Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    28
    @GingerCoffee I don't believe the posts are related. The other post was related to the difference in use of saw (filter vs a character noticing something). This one came up when I was looking for an example to use in that post. This post is related to whether that last sentence jumps POV, however I do believe your response on my other post answers this question as well. I should keep the original sentence of He saw her hurry to the other side of the room (albeit with 'saw' changed to 'watched').

    I realize that by not seeing that particular use of saw as valid ie. character A noticing character B doing something, I inadvertently changed POV in that one sentence.

    I'm happy for a moderator delete/lock this thread.

    Thanks heaps @GingerCoffee ! It's lessons like when a word can be used and when it is just a filter word that help me be a better writer :)
     
  4. GingerCoffee
    Offline

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    17,605
    Likes Received:
    5,879
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    I see.

    That all sounds like Thomas' POV.

    No POV change there because you are not in Clair's head. Describing what someone is doing is not their POV. Describing what they are doing while hidden behind a door would be if your narrator was not omniscient.
     
  5. ChickenFreak
    Offline

    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2010
    Messages:
    8,997
    Likes Received:
    5,506
    No, you're still in Thomas's point of view. He saw her hurry to the other side of the room--that's not information that only she has. But you don't have to tell us that he saw her--you can just state what he saw without specifically using the verb "saw."

    (Edited to add: Unless your issue is with the word "hurried" because that suggests an understanding of her motivation that Thomas doesn't have? If so, it would be fine if it were changed to "She walked quickly to the other side of the room.")

    Similarly, in the other thread, when you had Clair staring into the woods, that was also still fine as a statement from Thomas's point of view.

    You would only be switching point of view if you told us things that Thomas didn't know. I provide a few samples:

    She hurried to the other side of the room.

    Tom can see the above, so it's fine from his point of view.

    She hurried to the other side of the room to get the pistol.

    But Tom doesn't know why she crossed the room, so this is not from his point of view.

    She hurried to the other side of the room and got the pistol.

    But Tom can see what she did, so this is OK.

    She hurried to the other side of the room and looked out the window.

    Tom can see this, so it's OK.

    She hurried to the other side of the room and looked for the squirrel outside the window.

    Tom doesn't know what she's looking for, so this is not OK.

    She hurried to the other side of the room and looked out the window. "The squirrel is gone."

    Tom can see her and hear her, so this is OK.
     
  6. mammamaia
    Offline

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    Messages:
    19,316
    Likes Received:
    1,014
    Location:
    Coquille, Oregon
    the first example is all in thomas' pov...

    so is the second... it isn't jumping into her head, because you're only describing what she did, not why she did it... or how she felt about doing it...
     

Share This Page