Hey there, been afraid of making this thread for a while, but here goes. Basically, I struggle writing characters (or writing in general) in 3rd person. Some of the big criticisms I get of my 3rd person writing include improper use of tense and POV (slipping into omniscient; between past / present). I'm simply at a loss of what to do. Because of that, I don't know how to properly get into each character's head, and translate it to the page. The only way I can do it is with italics. So for example: "There was no way he could go back," Jayson thought. This grows tiresome though, and is very... rookie? As far as *how* 3rd person is written, is there a difference between the narrator being a separate entity versus the story being narrated by the character(s)? The story I'm writing follows two different characters. So it is very important that I can improve my ability to write in 3rd person. I need to be able to delve into their minds, while also maintaining a clear separation between the two characters (each chapter follows either one or the other, but not both). This would also allow for comparing and contrasting the two of them, which means they would feel more alive and real. For parts of the story the characters, a man and woman, are not together; then later in the story they are together and developing a relationship. Hope this made sense. Guess what I'm asking for, is some tips? Examples? Maybe some books I can read (whether they be "books about writing" or fiction). I'm already reading a dystopian series called Quarantine, which is written in third person, however the author taps into the heads of many different characters. Speaking of tapping into the heads of different characters, what constitutes as head-hopping, and why is that such a bad thing? Or is it a bad thing? Cheers, -Kyle P.S. Other books I'm reading include the Metro 2033 series, and The Hunger Games series. Also dystopian. Trying to read books that I not only enjoy, but might also help me overcome my failure... but so far no dice; something's getting lost in translation. Frustrating.