Dec 15, 2017

The Write-A-Story Calendar Day 15: The Deep End

Today I thought we'd discuss writing deep point of view. For me, understanding this technique was a real game-changer. I've always had trouble with conveying character emotion, and this really helped. 

So what is deep point of view?

Basically it means writing in a way that the reader can really get it the character's head and feels like she's living the story, not reading it. 

To achieve this effect, the idea is to pay attention to distancing words and to eliminate them entirely. These include:
  • Sense words like "saw," "felt," "heard," etc. Simply state the sensation, or see if you can rephrase the sentence.
  • "thought"  or "wondered"
Here are a few more tips:
  • Avoid passive voice
  • Stick to the limits of the character's POV, so no head-hopping or omniscient POV
  • Utilize internal monologue and try the stream-of-consciousness technique
  • Remember to show, not tell
  • Keep the character's voice consistent in internal monologue also
  • Filter description through character observation and emotion
You can find a lot of resources about the technique online, but a book that helped me understand this was Rayne Hall's Writing Deep Point of View, if you want to check it out.

Today might be a good day to skip writing your 350 words and to go over your story and eliminate  most of these distancing words. Is there anything else you can do to achieve a deeper point of view? Does it work for your story?


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