Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Writing from different Points of Views

So far most of the books and stories I have read and written have always been from the main character’s Point of View. The events unfold as the main character sees it. Everything that happens in the stories happen in connection to the main character. Most of the books and stories I have read have always embraced a single POV.

I have read just a few books with two POV’s. But in almost all these books we can consider both the characters as the main ones. A friend told me about  a book where both the main characters narrate alternate chapters. I read a review of a book online where the two main characters present the stories from their points of view: in each chapter they see  things differently. I thought that was a cool way of seeing things. I am yet to read books with more than two POV’s.

Rick Riordan’s series Kane Chronicles has the two main characters, the siblings Sadie and Carter each telling their version of the story. To avoid confusion underneath the chapter heading the author mentions the name of the character whose point of view is being presented. I enjoyed these books tremendously. I felt it was unusual and quirky as both the characters had their charm and individual way of story telling.

I must mention that I have just read one story where the main character was the antagonist. I found it very different from the usual stories I normally read.

Do you feel stories with points of views of different characters and not the main character can be successful? What do you feel about stories told from the POV of the antagonist? Do the antagonists  then become the protagonists in such stories and the protagonists the antagonists? Can such stories work? Which POV do you all prefer in your stories, both as a writer and reader?
       

15 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I like stories with more than one point of view. Mine were written from the two main character's point of view.

Rahul Bhatia said...

Nice food for thought for writing, Rachna! Less hard work for critics in such a situation, to get divergent views in the story itself:)

Cheryl Klarich said...

You touched upon something that seems simple, but POV really is the thing that dictates the whole book!

So really, it could be the most important decision an author can make!

Anu said...

I have never read any book with two POV's , Its nice thought though, suggest me some books which has two POV's.

Richard said...

There are various ways of doing POV and they all work, if done correctly.

Cynthia Chapman Willis said...

It seems to me that the point of view, or views, needs to be in service to the story. Some work best with two points of view, but other tales might be too confusing with more than one POV. Also, who is best suited to tell the story depends on the novel and the writer's intent. It can be tricky figuring out how to best tell a story.

Núria said...

I'd love to sahre your writings with my students. May I?

Núria said...

Sorry! I mean SHARE!

alexia said...

Dan Brown's books hop between many characters heads, from the main character to other major ones and even minor ones. He does it incredibly well and it really adds to the story.

Though I haven't read them, just watched the show, George Martin does this with the Game of Thrones series. He does it chapter by chapter I think.

nobu said...

I am one of your regular followers and I must say your post are very helpful as I do creative writing classes
with my students.

with POVs I haven't really thought about it until now, thank you for that and if you could shed some more light on this, i think it will be very helpful.

Lynda R Young said...

I do believe multiple POVs can work, but I also believe they're going out of fashion, which is unfortunate.

cherie said...

I don't mind multiple POVs as long as the author seems to know what they're doing (i.e. no sudden POV switches, the POVs are different from each other or distinct enough to be recognized as separate from the other POV, both charcters are vital to the story, etc.).

Mark Noce said...

I've always loved multiple points of view, from Kim S. Robinson to George R.R. Martin. For me, the more the merrier.

icedgurl said...

trekking your blog!!!

cheers!
..TREK..

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Thrillers work well when in both the protagonist's and the antagonist's point of views. For some stories, it ups the suspense.