Friday, January 8, 2016

Four Viewpoints (Part 2 of 17)

POV is the perspective from which you tell a story or anecdote and it applies to fiction and nonfiction. Some say it's the single, most important choice you have to make. I wouldn't go that far, but POV influences how readers perceive the story.

POV answers:

• Who is my main character?

• Which character do I want readers to empathize with or understand?

• How do I want readers to view the setting?

If you chose your POV well, your writing flows. One expert said, "POV is the glue that holds the story together. It also dictates what kind of description we use and which characters get to do the describing."

Suppose the Old Testament story of Joseph and his brothers was written in the POV of Gad? Could he have seen the wickedness of his own heart? (See Genesis chapters 37 to 50.)

Could the 10 brothers have known what went on in Joseph's life after they sold him into slavery? Or if it had been written in Joseph's POV (first person), he couldn't have known the plotting of his brothers or their feelings afterward. By making it third person, we get a rounder picture of the entire story, but we don't have the warm, private picture of Joseph.

Different perspectives bring out
different aspects of a story.

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