1. trufflepigg
    Offline

    trufflepigg New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0

    First Novel, Multiple POV'S?????

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by trufflepigg, Apr 24, 2013.

    Hello,

    I am writing my first novel and feel the best way to capture the characters is from both a first person pov and a third person pov.

    In general, the book is about a father and son, the son idolizes his father because he's an astronaut and a famous public figure, but the father doesn't seem to encourage his son getting into that line of work, even though the son is extremely interested. It's a thriller/suspense/science fiction kinda young adults novel...or something lol

    Anyway, I want to write some chapters from the son's first person pov and other chapters narrated from third person pov when dealing with the Dad. Is this too much jumping around? Are there other books out there like this? I just don't want to make a rookie mistake if there's any 'rule of thumb', when it comes to POV's.

    Thanks all!
     
  2. Karnival
    Offline

    Karnival New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Blackpool, England
    From what I've gathered from speaking to people and this may not be the gospel but if it's your first novel it would be more favourable to write in Third Person, unless it is of necessity to the story that it has to be in First Person.

    Generally the reason being that due to first person being a single viewpoint, if not written well it can descend into kind of preaching that lacks objectivity, forcing a view on your reader and therefore not allowing them to make their own inference and connection to the story. So in a way hindering the stories development.

    People will have their own view on this, that's just my thoughts. Hopefully you'll get some more replies that will help balance the argument. Anyhow, as long as your happy with what you write that's all that matters, the rest is a bonus :)
     
  3. trufflepigg
    Offline

    trufflepigg New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think you make a great point Karnival. I never thought about it that way - the lack of objectivity thing. However, If I'm switching between the main character who is in 1st person, and other characters (at chapter breaks) that are in third person, does that not make it a bit unique? I mean now you get an idea of what's going on inside the main characters head, but can also see that character from other objective view points?
     
  4. Karnival
    Offline

    Karnival New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2013
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Blackpool, England
    Personally, I do think it would work and by using Chapter breaks / Scene breaks it would clearly define for the reader the change in perspective. I'm not sure how unique this would be though because the same effect can be achieved as in the answer to the second part of the reply.


    This is true, but you can also get the same insight from a persons actions and reactions within the narrative without the specific need to tell the reader.


    Hope this offers some use and doesn't confuse the issue too much. End of the day do what's right for you, the worst case scenario being that you can always rework it.
     
  5. captain kate
    Offline

    captain kate Active Member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2008
    Messages:
    876
    Likes Received:
    28
    Location:
    Cruising through space.
    I've found that kind of book to be jarring and very annoying. 'Bitter Angels' by C.S. Anderson is written like that and it made my head hurt-and given my appetite for reading, that's saying something. It was by far the worst reading experience I've had in a long time.
     
  6. Edward M. Grant
    Offline

    Edward M. Grant Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2012
    Messages:
    382
    Likes Received:
    66
    Location:
    Canada
    That's a moderately common means of telling a story with multiple characters where one is first person POV. An Iain Banks novel I read a year or so back did it, for example.
     
  7. thebigcricket
    Offline

    thebigcricket New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2013
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Colorado!
    Check out Cormac McCarthy's No Country for Old Men. He switches back and forth between third person and first person. First person is always contained within its own chapter, and is in italics. It works well.

    Karnival mentions some real risks of this technique, but some of those risks can be merits if you execute well. E.g. you provide a character's non-objective viewpoint that a reader can form opinions about, while still forming their own opinion about the rest of the story. It can certainly add new dimensions to your story.
     

Share This Page