Know It All

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Today, we will tackle the difficult to define—and even more difficult to write—Omniscient Point of View.

In this POV, the story is told from the perspective of the narrator, who knows all and sees all.

In this POV, the narrator reveals the actions, thoughts—even the motives—of any and all characters, all the while maintaining a god-like distance.

The narrator is unbiased and simply reports the story. Because of this, writing in the Omniscient POV often ends up in telling—not showing—which, of course, is a writing “no-no.”

Writing in the Omniscient POV is very difficult and has largely fallen into disuse. Many writers who attempt the Omniscient POV are accused of “head hopping” (when a narrator jumps without warning from the perspective of one character into the perspective of another).

In Omniscient POV, the narrator observes the mindsets of the story’s characters. Thus, it is ever so tempting to portray these thoughts in the characters’ voices. But, be warned: no direct thoughts are allowed in this style of POV.

Before trying your hand at Omniscient POV, read several books written in this style. Doing so will give you a good idea of how other authors have tackled it—and if you even enjoy writing that way.

Some books written in the Omniscient POV are: Bleak House by Charles Dickens; The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky; and Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger.

Enjoy challenges? This is one on a grand scale. However, if you master it, I guarantee you will stand out in the crowd.

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Can Pigs Fly?

 

30799328490_7a5353645dHave you ever met with friends you haven’t seen in a long time and as you talked, you felt out of step—out of sync?

Like so much time has passed since your paths crossed that you feel like your reality and theirs doesn’t quite coincide?

Maybe your perspectives are different…your interests have changed…

It might be a little unnerving at first, but later, as you contemplate your conversation, you find their ideas are thought-provoking—even refreshing.

Could a change of perspective be good for a writer?

Could it be just the shot-in-the-arm that sparks creativity?

Try this: write a paragraph in your genre. (Say, mystery).

Then, write it again, in fantasy.

Write it as romance or romantic suspense.

It’s the same paragraph. But it’s oh-so-different from teach of these different perspectives, isn’t it?

Now, go back to the genre you usually write in. Use the creative differences from the writing exercises you just completed to re-write your original paragraph.

I have found that when I feel stuck for a fresh way of expression doing this gets those creative juices flowing again.

Want to share what’s worked for you?