1. vVvRapture
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    vVvRapture Member

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    Does this perspective diminish the story?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by vVvRapture, Jul 10, 2012.

    Sup everyone.

    So, I got an idea for a novel that I'm really excited about and am going to start working on soon. I've got a lot on it in terms of details and whatnot and now I'm in the stages of producing an outline of the story's plot and whatnot.

    However, I've come across a bit of a roadblock. I'll explain what I mean:

    I have come up with two different versions of the same story, it seems. To summarize, they both revolve around the story of a young guy who, after a tragic event in his town, finds that he and some of his peers now have superhuman abilities. They then come together and form a compact to help the city and they end up having to prepare for the arrival of a beast that wants to open the doorway to another dimension so it can take over the world.

    The first version is basically that story, told in the third person and focuses on the main character mentioned before.

    The second version of that is the same story, but instead focuses on a non-superhuman girl who stumbles upon the secret of these new superhumans and joins them in their compact.

    I really like the second version because its told from the side of a non-superhuman surrounded by superhumans and all of what comes with that circumstance. However, I feel like the story wouldn't be as good as the first version - why would anyone want to read about some person who can't fight alongside her friends when they could just read the same story that focuses on one of the superhumans?

    I really like the idea of having this story focus on the girl and her being alongside these people but not one of them, but I have doubts that I'll be able to capture the story in the best possible way if the story focuses on the girl instead of one of the superhumans, that I won't be able to capture important relationships between the superhumans and each other or their antagonists if the story does not focus on one of them.

    Am I correct to be doubtful?
     
  2. Steph4136
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    Steph4136 Senior Member

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    Why don't you try it out both ways and see what works better for you? If they're both told in third-person I don't see why you couldn't involve this girl in it and have your readers know what she's thinking and feeling.

    Sounds like a cool idea for a story, hope you post some of it here when you start writing it.
     
  3. vVvRapture
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    vVvRapture Member

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    Yeah, I'm not interested in this having a first-person perspective. The girl is going to be in the story either way (albeit a bit tweaked depending on which version I pick), but it depends on whether or not the true main character is a member of the compact or the girl.

    If the main character is one of the compact, I plan on the girl playing the roll of a love interest, but also an unpredictable kind of character. She's a high school journalist, a real dedicated one, so she would function as sometimes a snoop, otherwise sort of a "Catwoman" kind of character that's an ally but not completely, if that makes sense. Like, she toys with the main character but ultimately helps him.

    If the main character is the girl, I'd tweak her a bit. I'm sure she'd still be a love interest to one of the compact members and she'd still be that dedicated journalist character, but instead you'd see a huge curiosity in her on the compact members and a dedication to researching for them and whatnot. She'd be less Catwoman-like, she wouldn't really play around and toy.
     
  4. Steph4136
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    Steph4136 Senior Member

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    I think you should just start writing to get to know them better, then see which way feels better. That's what I've had to do with stories before. If anything it'll be a good exercise to build your characters up and learn about their nuances.
     
  5. vVvRapture
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    vVvRapture Member

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    Yeah, I think I'll try that out, possibly write some random scenes in both versions of the story and see how I like them.
     
  6. Clumsywordsmith
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    Clumsywordsmith Active Member

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    The second version, without a doubt. It's the better way to give your story an actual chance to be a bit more unique.
     
  7. AlexLB
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    AlexLB New Member

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    I'm had the same problem but what I thought of is "Where do I want to go?" regarding scenes. Do I want to stay with this one particular character or roam to the antagonist, or secondary character. When I looked at the MC I realized that having the reader stay with her would move the story forward, but not enough to keep the tension building the way 3rd person would. I have a bad habit of making every character important to the story or I wouldn't put them in there.
     
  8. lasm
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    lasm Member

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    I think the second version would be better for a couple of reasons.
    First, clearly it's more interesting to you, so you'll write it better.
    Second, your non-superhuman reader will identify closely with the non-superhuman character.
    Third, you won't have to try to describe things like how it feels to shoot lasers from your eyes and such, because your POV character won't know that either.

    If it slows the story down - frankly, I know a lot of people around here think POV shifts are shocking and terrible, but done reasonably well, IMO they can be fine. Maybe you could have two POV characters.
     
  9. thecoopertempleclause
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    thecoopertempleclause Contributing Member

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    Your second version is quite a common technique actually. It's called various things, but I refer to it as "The Ishael," that is a first-person peripheral narrator. It's especially useful if you want to tell a story of people whose minds you don't want to give access to, or to make superpowered people seem more relatable. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle used it for Sherlock Holmes in the form of Watson.
     
  10. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Second version sounds harder but more unique.

    As for why would anyone wanna read about the non-supernatural girl who can't fight, while being alongside superhumans who could - just think one word: Twilight.
     
  11. vVvRapture
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    vVvRapture Member

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    Thanks everyone. :)

    I wrote some scenes in both versions and I'll be going with the second one. Thanks for all the input, I took it into consideration.
     

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