Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Progress and Viewpoint...

Just a quick post today.

The minimum wordage target seems to be working for me; Tuesday I added 518 words to the first draft of Chapter 4 and sorted out my propriety issue, which I discussed in an earlier post.

I prefer to write my longer length stories in third person viewpoint. Usually the story is being told from both my hero and heroine's perspective- the she/he; but there are chapters where it will start with one and then at an appropriate point resume with the other after a break.

For me, which method I use in the chapter is about the situation my character/s are in, or if it's interaction between my hero and heroine, what is happening between them, or their thoughts and reactions to that moment- an ideal time for internal conflicts to emerge.

Occasionally I do slot in a scene from a key secondary character's viewpoint, but only when there's no other way to get an important element or information over to the reader.

But I do make it clear that the viewpoint has changed within a scene/chapter by using line breaks.

I was reading an e-book preview of an historical romance a few days ago, by an author that I hadn't read before. It was fine and then suddenly the viewpoint switched in the next paragraph from hero to heroine and I was immediately pulled out of the story.

The head-hop may have been missed in the editing process, or perhaps it was just an issue with the formatting of the e-book and there should have been a break to show the change of viewpoint within the scene. It may even have been intended to be written that way...

Some writers have successfully incorporated head-hopping (as the scene progresses without a break) in their books- I've read a few Mills and Boons where this has been done without jarring; but it isn't something I like to see, or read.

Perhaps some readers wouldn't notice or be bothered by it, but sudden viewpoint switches do seem to jump out at writers...

Well I better get on, I have a few more words to add to my weekly total...


liz young said...

Yesterday and today my total was 195 words for OWC - written in one sweep and then edited today. The rest of my time hs been spent on editing my novel which can't count as new words, so you're doing miles better than I am!

Teresa Ashby said...

I think sticking to the viewpoint of one character can make for a stronger story and when I think of my favourite books, most of them are written that way. But as you say, if a viewpoint switch is smoothly done, it usually works fine :-) x

Anonymous said...

I think head-hopping takes a lot of skill to do it successfully and is better avoided unless the author is very experienced.

Like you, I have read M&B books where it has been done well but it's not something I would attempt myself.

Well done on achieving your word targets!

Carolb said...

You are certainly doing well, Lizy- well done.

Editing can be as hard work as writing something from the beginning. :-)

You make an interesting point there, Teresa.
I don't mind books that are only from one viewpoint, but much prefer having another viewpoint used. I enjoy those stories more.

Thank you, Gail. :-)