Saturday, January 6, 2018

3 Reasons to Limit Point of View....

A Note from S.J. Francis: Ah-Point of View. If there was anything more confusing about writing, I don't know what it is. For me, point of view is it. I love reading all kinds of books. I love writing but as far as reading and writing regarding point of views, I prefer the third person omniscient for point of view. For me, it's similiar to watching a film or a stage play. I can enjoy seeing the action placed out in front of me. Same as reading a book in third point of view. Now, how about you? Which point of view do you enjoy writing and/or reading in? Why or why not? Until next time....


3 Reasons to Limit Point of View | BookDaily #AuthorTips

Melissa Eskue Ousley                                                            December 12, 2016 
I’ve read a number of books lately that have had something in common, despite being from different genres. They all used third person omniscient for point of view. Point of view (POV) is the perspective from which a story is told. In third person omniscient, the author knows what is happening with all the characters. The author can even share information only the author could know, describing moments when no characters are present to experience them. Using this type of POV can be tricky, however. Here are three reasons why using third person limited (or first person limited) might be preferable.
Head-hopping: While it can be helpful for readers to have a broad view of a story, it can be challenging to transition from a wide lens to a narrow focus. As an editor, a problem I often see in manuscripts is hopping from one character’s head to another’s without offering cues that the POV has changed. This can be difficult for a reader to follow, interrupting the reading experience as the reader tries to figure out what’s happening in a scene. It can be particularly jarring when accompanied by banter with little or no dialogue attribution.
As writers, we want to keep readers engaged, never introducing something that might yank them out of the world of the story. We’re aware of the scaffolding supporting a story, but we keep that carefully hidden. The last thing we want is a reader peeking behind the curtains, seeing how we work our magic, right?
One way to combat head-hopping is to use a limited POV (either third person or first person). In either limited POV, the writer stays in one character’s head, conveying information about what that character thinks, feels, and perceives. It is still possible to change POV to another character, but the writer clues in the reader by introducing a new scene or chapter. Having this cue creates a seamless transition from one character’s POV to another’s.
Diluted Focus: Another problem with using an omniscient point of view is a wide lens can dilute the focus on characters, rendering their emotional reactions less potent. If you tell the story using a limited POV, from within a character, the reader vicariously experiences what the character experiences. Characters may be more relatable and emotionally rich because there is a more intimate connection than if a story is told outside a character. That emotional connection is important in keeping readers engaged. That’s not to say you can’t create emotional impact using the omniscient POV, but the focus is not as sharp as it is with a limited POV.
Suspense: To be fair, there’s a reason why we say third person limited point of view is limited. The reader experiences only what the character experiences. They make inferences about events and other characters based solely on what the viewpoint character sees, hears, or says. For a suspense novel, that’s not a bad thing. Having a narrow focus can create a sense of unease since there are things the character doesn’t know. The reader solves the mystery at the same time the character does. Using a limited POV can create opportunities to misdirect a reader, adding plot twists. This sleight of hand can add to the magic of a story.
Do you have any thoughts on point of view? Which type do you prefer to use in your writing?
About the Author:
Melissa Eskue Ousley is an award-winning author of young adult fiction. Her first book, Sign of the Throne, won a 2014 Eric Hoffer Book Award and a 2014 Readers' Favorite International Book Award. Her third book, The Sower Comes, won a 2016 Eric Hoffer Book Award. Her newest book, Sunset Empire, is included in the young adult box set, Secrets and Shadows. She has edited fiction for Barking Rain Press and contributes monthly articles on writing, editing, and book marketing to She is a member of the Editorial Freelancers Association.
Connect with her at and on Twitter.
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S. J. Francis, Writing is my passion, but animals are my world. 
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In Shattered Lies: "It's All About Family." Available now from for sale at all on-line retailers and independent booksellers.

Shattered Lies is a runner-up in the 2016 Shelf Unbound Indie Best Book Award Competition.

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