Author Topic: Point of View - advice needed  (Read 2445 times)

Offline sleepycat

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Point of View - advice needed
« on: August 31, 2006, 08:01:11 AM »
I'm writing a short story from the viewpoint of a teenage boy, written in 3rd person. The plot hinges on his relationship with his father.

My problem is whether I can vary how I write about his father. At the moment, whenever he's referred to, I'm calling him just that - 'his father', but it seems a bit repetitive. But could I use a first name for him if the son wouldn't actually call him that?

Eg, the following passage (Rory's POV):

... his father had looked at the map and pronounced the journey straightforward.
     ‘It’s only a few miles north west of here. The second turn off the main road, and then it should be signposted.’
     But there were quite a few turnings off the main road that apparently weren’t on the map. Rory had known for a while that they were going in the wrong direction – he could tell from the position of the sun that they’d been travelling south west for several miles – but no-one had asked him, so he hadn’t said anything. His father eventually stopped in a hamlet and collared an elderly lady who was walking a very small dog.
     ‘Le parc d’Aventure – oů est?’ he began in broken French, while Rory sank further down in his seat.
     His father quite often did things like this. [etc]

Could I replace a 'his father' with a name, and still have it sounding like Rory's POV?

Help needed soon, please! And any other comments gratefully received.

I get a bit muddled generally with POV - can you vary the viewpoint within one section of a story?



Offline Sherri

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Re: Point of View - advice needed
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2006, 10:06:58 AM »
I think it's perfect just like it is.  It doesn't feel like you're using "his father" too often if that's what you're worried about.

Sherri

Nadine L

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Re: Point of View - advice needed
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2006, 11:55:40 AM »
How about switching it out like this?

"His father eventually stopped in a hamlet and collared an elderly lady who was walking a very small dog."

They eventually stopped in a hamlet and collared an elderly lady who was walking a very small dog.

Does that work?

Nadine

Lori K

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Re: Point of View - advice needed
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2006, 01:46:20 AM »
I think using his father sounds fine in your writing.

You can get his name in for the reader with dialogue at some point when it's appropriate for him to introduce himself for some reason. Or the father can be stopped for a traffic infraction and the policeman hands back the father's drivers license and addresses him by name, or he meets up with someone he knows who calls him by name, or he swears an oath, "As sure as my name is..." . Many different ways to work it in at some point if you want to.

 ;D

Offline sleepycat

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Re: Point of View - advice needed
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2006, 06:07:49 AM »
Thanks everyone. I'll probably stick with all the 'his fathers'. From your suggestions I don't think naming him in the main narrative would sound right, from his son's POV.

I still would like some advice on how to change POV within a piece - should a new viewpoint have a new section of narrative (ie, a section break), or can you think of examples (of good, published authors!) where the POV varies within one section?

Thanks

Offline Alice, a Country Gal

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Re: Point of View - advice needed
« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2006, 06:37:34 AM »
Thanks everyone. I'll probably stick with all the 'his fathers'. From your suggestions I don't think naming him in the main narrative would sound right, from his son's POV.

I still would like some advice on how to change POV within a piece - should a new viewpoint have a new section of narrative (ie, a section break), or can you think of examples (of good, published authors!) where the POV varies within one section?

Thanks

Sleepycat,
I'm among those who have no problem with "his father" - viewed from the son's POV I have no need for his name and the way you have it reads true to me.

As a reader I find changing POV easier to read when a new section is started.  Not necessarilly a new chapter, just a clear break from the previous section. 

Alice
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