POST CARDS FROM THE MUSE
They Will Smell Your Fear
By Nandy Ekle
One of my friends was taking a poll. She asked everyone which they preferred, a story written in first person or a story written in third person. Of course, the numbers were pretty even on both sides of the question because this is a personal preference.
But I started thinking. There are definite advantages and disadvantages to those Points of View (POVs). I can enjoy a good story no matter what the POV is, if it’s done right. With first person, the goal is to be more connected to the main character, and therefore the reader will be more connected. The disadvantage is you can only have the one view point. If you are the main character, you are restricted to your own head. And these two rules are the opposite for third person: you can see through lots of eyes, but because of that, you don’t have time to connect as deeply with the main character.
So what was my answer to my friend’s survey? I told her to write in the POV she was most comfortable with. If you’re connected with your characters and you’re comfortable with them, it will show up in the way you tell the story. This will make your readers connected and comfortable with them. If you’re not comfortable, that will also show up in your writing. The readers will definitely know that too.
Congratulations. You have just received a post card from the muse.
I Admit It; I’m an Outliner.
By Rory C. Keel
It is generally accepted among writers that there are two categories of writers: outliners and non-outliners, otherwise known as “plotters and pantsers.”
While non-outliners, or pantsers, fly by the “seat of their pants” when writing, the plotter or outliner does just what the name implies, we make an outline.
Make an outline.
When your writing begins, make a brief outline of the story you want to create. It doesn’t need to be a formal outline with roman numerals and such, but a basic list of plot points. It can be very general or elaborately detailed, either way you know the direction you want to take your story.
Benefits of Outlining
There are several benefits in outlining.
- It allows you to know where you’re going.
- It allows you to see the balance of a story at a glance.
- Keeps you from chasing dead ends.
- Helps in determining the POV of your story.
If you are struggling with writer’s block, try outlining the rest of your story to move you forward.
TRAILS END – The novel
Point of View
When I first attempted writing, I knew what every character was thinking and doing, how they felt, and why. I simply told the reader all they needed to know. Learning to write from one character’s point of view and letting them show the reader the story, became intimidating. For a while I became stifled, unable to make any progress with my story.
With the help of my good friends in Wordsmith Six, and attending the Jodi Thomas Writers Academy at WTAM, I’m learning. There is, however, a POV I still struggle with. Trails End is a main character in my novel, and I really want to incorporate the horse’s POV a few times through out the story. I just finished such a chapter, and I have no idea if it will fly. My Wordsmith Six group might have to fix it.
Have you seen the movie “War Horse”? The book was loaned to me by Natalie Bright because it’s written entirely from the horse’s POV. What a great story. So at least I know it can be done. I can only hope my novel will be as compelling.
Thanks for reading,