1. ΣΕΙΡΙΟΣ
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    ΣΕΙΡΙΟΣ New Member

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    POV Question and Tragic Irony.

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by ΣΕΙΡΙΟΣ, Feb 13, 2013.

    Hi to all!

    I'm a new member of this forum, I am from Greece and English is my second language, so please feel free to correct me if any grammatical errors are made.
    My stories belong to the "epic fantasy" style, or if you prefer "epic fantasy" genre. the language of my writings is Greek but it would be a great pleasure for me to give a try translating some of my stories in order to share them with you. I could also gladly offer my help, if any of you is studying modern or ancient Greek and has questions about the language.

    As the thread's title suggests..
    My question is about POV and tragic irony. When we are using third person limited there is a limitation in describing the emotions, feelings, and deeper thoughts of one specific character, on the other hand when writing in omniscient there is no limitation for us to stick with one character. So far so good, the problem is: does third person limited also means that the author is limited to the "line of sight" of that specific character, which means that I am obligated to describe to the readers only what the character is able to see with his eyes? Let me give an example. Lets say that the main character and his party, are heading towards the "bad guy's lair". At this point as an author I would like to inform the reader, about a possible future of the main character, by describing a scene in the "the bad guy's lair", in which the political enemies of the main character are plotting an ambush for our hero. By doing this I could create tragic irony, which means that the readers would know about the upcoming ambush which, on the other hand, the protagonist and his party would be unaware of. But, how I am supposed to to create this tragic irony if I am restricted to follow, as a "camera", only the protagonist and his party i.e I am limited to the protagonist's line of sight? The same problem applies in large battle scenes in which I would like to "zoom out" from my main character and give an epic feeling to the reader by describing a little bit of the battle from above.

    Thank you for reading!
     
  2. Xatron
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    Xatron Contributing Member

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    The third person limited is "limited" in the manner of not having insight pertaining to the characters' inner thoughts, feelings and the like. You are free to describe a scene from the "bad guy's lair" so long as you don't overstep those boundaries. Line of sight is also not limited to what your character can see unless you are writing in first person. Think of third person limited as an uninvolved observer watching from a distance that can see what the characters do, see, listen, smell etc but not what they think or feel.
     
  3. Pyraeus
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    Pyraeus Member

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    Hi there.

    It seems you might have quite a large scale to your story. A Song of Ice and Fire makes use of several POV's in order to show you the story from several diffferent outlooks. You might try to do something similar by maybe having a POV Character that is a member of the enemy faction.
     
  4. ΣΕΙΡΙΟΣ
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    ΣΕΙΡΙΟΣ New Member

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    Thank you both for your replies!

    Well.. it sounds a very good idea, but I would like to give a more "Homeric" feeling of narration if I may say.. I will experiment with that style though, I always like to give a try to other peoples' suggestions!
     
  5. Juju Bagdasarian
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    Juju Bagdasarian Member

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    Seiriai welcome its good to see greek here even though i havent been a member for so long.
    i understand the concept of the idea its hard to juggle to many characters at one scene where they all have a necessary part to play i had a similar problem a while back i and saw that it was most fiting way for everyone to have a place was to now what role and how important it was to the scene,after i understood that and mad i timetable so to speak of how things worked,i focused on the one with the most interactions and having the other come only on the right time as i saw it and break the one on one
    dialogue. but then it all goes in how you describe the scene to your reader use heavy words heavy colors if the characters also have their minds or a conversation about something totaly diffrent from what is ready to happen i believe it give you the edge for surprising them. i hope that helps :)
     
  6. heal41hp
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    heal41hp Contributing Member

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    While I confess I didn't look at a tremendous number of sources to confirm this, third-person limited is the same as close and deep third-person.

    http://blog.nathanbransford.com/2012/11/third-person-omniscient-vs-third-person.html

    Of course, I don't think I'm having to argue this point with you, ΣΕΙΡΙΟΣ (I got the impression you already got that), but I was more addressing Xatron's post. As far as I am aware and have read, third-person limited is a lot more limited than he was describing.

    Whenever I write in third-person limited, the readers only experience what the character being followed is experiencing. What that character hears, sees, smells, tastes, etc. is what the readers (at least proverbially) hear, see, smell, taste, etc. However, I have several point of view characters and I swap between them between chapters, thus allowing for more facets of the story to be revealed to the readers.

    The article I linked above is from an author's blog. In at least one of his published books, he on rare occasion broke this guideline with third-person limited and had the narrative follow other characters (or listen in on them) without having to create other PoV characters that were consistently followed. I'm honestly not sure how I feel about this myself but it is clearly acceptable for someone.

    I'm not entirely sure how much of a help I've been, aside from taking up space... :D
     
  7. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    kalimera, serious!

    have you decided against using omniscient, in favor of third limited?... if so, why?

    where in greece do you live?... i have been many times to many parts of greece and wish i could live out my remaining time on earth in the greek isles, as i seem to have a greek soul...

    welcome aboard!

    love and hugs, maia
     
  8. killbill
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    killbill Contributing Member

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    I was also asking the same question as I was reading the OP's post. And I don't see a problem if you have multiple view point characters in third person limited. It may be tricky if you are doing it for the first time but then there are so many novels which do it successfully. I suggest you to read some of them and then try using it.
     

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