Two Ways for Tracking Important Elements of Your Story

You’re writing your story in multiple point of view. How do you keep track of how many scenes you have in each POV?

Your story has a specific time frame. How do you track your scenes to ensure you follow that timeline?

Maybe your story takes place in 5 different cities. How can you ensure you’re in the right place?

Today, I’m going to look at 2 ways for tracking important elements of your story and how you can see them at a glance. [Read more…]

Discover How Point of View Impacts Your Story

How much thought do you give to point of view (POV) as you begin a new story?

The best POV for your story is not always the protagonist or even the antagonist. Consider how different the book To Kill a Mockingbird would have been if told from Atticus’ POV. Or Gone with the Wind from Ashley’s POV.

To help you experiment, here’s a writing exercise. [Read more…]

Who’s Telling Your Story?

little girl looking through paper towel roll

Perspective makes a difference.

Should I write my novel in first person or third (or get totally wild and use second person)?

Am I limited to a single character, or can I use multiple point of view (POV) characters?

Who should my novel’s POV character be?

You want to write a story readers can’t put down, but how do you decide what point of view is the best for your particular story? In fact, how can you even begin to write without having decided this basic element of your story?

There are so many choices. How do you decide what’s best so you can increase your chances of writing a best-selling novel? [Read more…]

What Does the Publishing World Expect?

I first met author J.A. Marx this summer when I interviewed her about her debut book, Destiny Defied. During that interview she spoke about publishing industry standards, so I asked her come back and share more.

J.A. has made a special offer for my readers with her post today. See the details at the bottom of this post.

What Does the Publishing World Expect?
by J.A. Marx

J.A. Marx, author of Destiny Defied

J.A. Marx, author of Destiny Defied

Fiction writing is a form of art. It’s fluid. Like music and fine arts, it changes to express and reflect the shifting thought processes and beliefs of our culture.

This can madden or bless the writer, and I’ll sum up why in one word: Subjectivity

I entered Destiny Defied in a contest a few years back. Two judges’ responses:

  • “I have not seen this good of writing in years.” Score: 10
  • “There are too many characters, and I don’t know where this is taking place.” Score: 4

Madden the writer: Agents and editors are equally biased for their own reasons, so research them before submitting anything.

Bless the writer: Write from your passion. Learn ALL the rules for writing before you start breaking those rules.

The essential standards (mentioned below) required [Read more…]

Point of View Defined, Part 2

Point of view. Think about those words and it will help you.

From whose perspective are you viewing your scene? Whose feelings and thoughts are being expressed in the scene?

Example from my present WIP:
Chase stared at Karl with what he hoped was a questioning, please-continue look in his blue eyes, but Karl just sat there like a dog refusing to fetch. He took a deep breath, clearly concerned and struggling for words.

Explanation:
We are in Chase’s POV. He is describing what he does (stared at Karl), and because he can’t see his own face describes what he hopes he’s trying to convey (a questioning, please-continue look). Chase goes on to describe Karl’s behavior (doesn’t respond, takes a deep breath, Chase sees concern on Karl’s face and discerns that Karl is struggling to find his words).

Practice: Whose POV is this in?
The breath Chase had been holding escaped violently, involuntarily. Abby’s mouthful of coffee came sputtering out all over her lap and across the corner of Karl’s desk. Karl pulled a handkerchief from his suit coat breast pocket and handed it to Abby. She wiped her mouth and then swiped away the coffee from Karl’s desk. (Leave your answer in the comments section.)

Review several pages of your work in progress. Are you showing the observations and feelings of more than one character in one paragraph, one page, one scene? Rework accordingly.

Would you like some feedback or help? Copy a paragraph from your WIP into the comments section and we’ll discuss.

Related articles:
Point of View Defined

Debra L. Butterfield © 2013

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