1. Totzlol
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    Totzlol Member

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    Multi-Perspective Writing

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Totzlol, Jun 29, 2011.

    The book I am currently working on starts out from two different perspectives. Completely different races, in fact, and what I was doing is, when switching perspectives, simply putting a double space in between paragraphs.

    Is that the best way? I have seen that method a lot in the fantasy books I read, but don't know if there is a better way. Also, is there a term for that style of writing?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Islander
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    Islander Contributing Member Contributor

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    "Point-of-view switch", maybe?

    It's a good idea to avoid fancy formatting when doing PoV switches. Just try to make it clear from context when you switch, for example, by mentioning the main character's name.
     
  3. Declan
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    Declan Senior Member

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    What Islander said.
     
  4. Totzlol
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    Totzlol Member

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    My goal so far has been, when performing a PoV switch, I make sure to mention in the first line which race is experiencing whatever is happening.

    For example, the following is a transition I used. The first two sentences being the last two of the vampire-like race's PoV, and the second being the first of the humans PoV.



    Again the beings laughter echoed through his thoughts. It was the last thing he heard before losing consciousness.

    “Seal the gate!” thundered the burly humans voice, “Let no demon enter Lionrest this night!”


    So from the first sentence, to the paragraph break, to the second sentence is it clear enough that you are going from the vampire-like race to the human race? And are there other methods that you think may be more suitable for such a transition?
     
  5. Declan
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    Declan Senior Member

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    I don't think it's clear enough, it all sounds like one point of view, I'm afraid.
     
  6. Totzlol
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    Totzlol Member

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    That's what I was afraid of. It all seems so easy to me because I am the one writing it. lol.

    Any suggestions to make it simpler?

    Is it too childish a form of writing to have a transition sentence like "Meanwhile at the human city."

    Obviously nothing that simple, but along those lines.

    Or maybe throwing in the classic

    *****

    between the two would help?
     
  7. Declan
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    Declan Senior Member

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    That should help :)

    Nouns work as points of reference, especially when establishing a point of view.
     
  8. Totzlol
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    Totzlol Member

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    Ah hah!

    Definitely noticing how big of a difference that makes.

    Crazy how something so simple can be so easily overlooked. lol.

    Thanks for the insight!
     
  9. Jonathan22
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    Jonathan22 Contributing Member

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    If you want it to be unclear, to add confusion to enhance the drama of the situation, you could just go as you are going. Being lost in the moment, having the reader confused during an exciting scene can be effective, as long as you explain what has happened from, say, the winner's, point of view afterwards so that it all makes sense when the reader thinks about it.

    Otherwise, it's as Declan said, use names to make it clear!
     

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