Top ten editor rants - number 3

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*holds up two fingers* "Pick numba free my lord" Advised the torturer, who then thought Hur hur hur. Farquhar indeed chose Princess Fiona. Little did he know she had a SECRET.



Editor rant number 3 - POV (POINT OF VIEW)

Submitted: August 19, 2018

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Submitted: August 19, 2018

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POV - Point of View.

Warning - This rant contains bad language  (and a small brain embolism :)~ ).

One of the questions I always ask potential clients is what's the POV of your manuscript? I've learnt that if I receive a response of... 'Ummm, I don't know.' or "I kinda made my own POV up." I run away. Because fixing POV issues is very time consuming, like, rewriting the entire manuscript kind of time consuming. A couple of instances, sure, everyone makes mistakes. The entire 100k word mansucript? NIGHTMARE.

RANT mode ENGAGED.

There are 4 primary points of view in fiction. These are: 

  • First person point of view. First person is when “I” am telling the story. ...
  • Second person point of view. The story is told to “you.” ...
  • Third person point of view, limited. The story is about “he” or “she.” ...
  • Third person point of view, omniscient.

Google is your friend here. There is plenty of material around about these topics...But I'm here to rant about the issue I ALWAYS see from new authors. We are doing the dreaded POV shift.

You see first point of view and second point of view...most writers can get that down pretty good, but the confusion around 3rd close (3rd limited) and 3rd Omni...drives me nucking futs.

So what are these two POV's that all the newbies pectally renetrate?

3rd Limited or 3rd Close is where the story is told from the point of view of a SINGLE character camera. The POV is limited to what that character can see, taste, smell, touch, think about, or sense in some way. (In case they are alien and shrondat others emotional states through their flublar organs).

This POV choice is very fashionable right now. 

3rd Omni is where the story is told from the point of view of an OMNISCIENT observer. (A god-like narrator voice). This POV has no limits. You can dive into the head of anyone. You can move forward and backward in time, you can do look backs and flashbacks and look forwards and flashforwards. There are nooo limits.

3rd Omni, seems with its glorious freedom to be easy. It's almost like there are no rules!

YES THERE ARE!

But the extra special issue that drives me insane and what generates this rant, is where clients THINK they are writing 3rd close, and drift into 3rd Omni. They start NARRATING. 

Let me demonstrate (and try not to have an embolism).

 

Kanara and Lelev were dancing in their perpetual motion, playing with the gravitational force that held them bound forever. In that season, Lelev, the minor star of the Hyran binary system got further and further. Lyra III was now at its furthest point to both suns in its elliptical movement around them.

 

Okay ignore the logical inconsistencies. The above - I kid you not - the author thought was from a third close POV. 

WHO is TALKING!!??

None of this is set within the frame of a character. Empress Inyazi isn't stargazing, looking up at the heavens and thinking this information (AND OMG HOW INFODUMPY IF SHE WAS), while a cabana-boy massages her flublars. 

 

So the author says, "So how do I tell the reader that the star system is a binary system."

 

A) Tell me why the binary system is story critical, bacause unless you are gonna blow one of them up... why the farly gnuck should the reader care, and

B) You don't tell me this information, you show me this information.

 

LIKE THIS EXAMPLEEmpress Inyazi felt the glorious sunlight of both Kanara and Lelev as they danced in their perpetual motion in the heavens. This cabana boy has talent. My flublars have never felt so gloriously fecund. She stretched on the lounging chair allowing nimble hands, greater access.

DELETE BOMB - In that season, Lelev, the minor star of the Hyran binary system got further and further. (FROM WHAT?) Lyra III was now at its furthest point to both suns in its elliptical movement around them.

So the author says, "I LOVE IT - But it's winter time, the planet is at it's furthest point away, and you took out that the system is called Hyran."

 

Empress Inyazi felt the glorious WINTER sunlight of both Kanara and Lelev as they danced in their perpetual motion in the heavens. This cabana boy has talent. My flublars have never felt so gloriously fecund. She stretched on the lounging chair allowing nimble hands, greater access.

I am NOT a ghost writer, I am a dev content editor. It is NOT my job to rewrite your NOVEL for you. My job is to point out the POV shift, the infodump, the logical inconsistency and suggest changes. Your job is to fix it.Ghost writers get paid $200 per hour. How many hours did it take you to write your novel?

Can you see why I run away???

 

1) Tension does not equal conflict https://www.booksie.com/563055-top-ten-editor-rants-number-1

2) The Wall of Text destruction https://www.booksie.com/564354-top-ten-editor-rants-number-2

 

 


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