Mid-week Technique – Deep POV

So here’s a question from a writer: “should I put everything into deep point of view when the heroine is doing stuff or only when she is thinking. Where is it good to keep 3rd person?”

Okay, let me preface this by saying I sometimes have NO CLUE what I’m doing when it comes to technical, writerly stuff 😀  That said, I’ll attempt to answer this question by providing insight into the way I write.  It may work for you, it may not.

So, what is deep point of view?  Simply, it is where you are in one character’s head so deeply that you’re no longer the author telling the story, you are your character.  It also means the absence of tags e.g. she thought, he wondered.  It’s a technique that adds an extra layer of emotional depth and punch to your story.  For example:

BEFORE:
John looked at his father, angry roiling through him.

AFTER:
You bastard.  Anger roiled, thick and all-encompassing.  I hate you.  I’ve always hated you.

By removing ‘his’ and ‘him’ which can distance you, I’ve focused on internal dialogue and the physical/emotional impact of that anger.

DPOV is also about using signature actions/reactions unique to your character, and can include phrases, internal thoughts, particular movements or ticks.

Should you put everything into deep POV?  And where is it good to keep third person?  You’re not gonna like this answer but… it depends on the story.  Told you :smile:.  I like to use DPOV at highly emotional moments – love scenes, black moments, emotional revelations – to create greater impact for the reader.  I like the immediacy of DPOV and the fact that we’re in the character’s head, thinking and feeling their emotions.  Anything that is done well, and creates a better way to tell the story is all right by me!

For further reading, I’d recommend this most awesome article at the RT BookReviews site.

And finally – anyone care to share your before/afters?

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2 comments on “Mid-week Technique – Deep POV

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