Bird Face Wendy

Things relevant to reading, writing, publishing or marketing teen fiction.

The Best Little Book About Writing Deep Point of View

on September 25, 2014

GirlGroupCrop I learned of a book titled Rivet Your Readers with Deep Point of View through a webinar and ordered it when I needed an extra $5 in purchases to receive free shipping on Amazon.

What a rewarding use of five bucks! Already familiar with deep point of view (POV), I wanted to read and share a little about this find with followers who are new to fiction writing.

RYRbook As small as it is, its information is so good I couldn’t wait to finish before telling you about it. Only 60 pages of material (shown here atop the essential Chicago Manual of Style), it doesn’t require you wade through lengthy explanations or complex examples to illustrate its points. It does contain simple examples of fixes for common problems in POV. Chapter One provides the basics of POV, an overview of the various “persons” and tense you might tell a story in, and how the “person” you choose affects the POV of your story.

Deep POV puts the reader inside the POV character’s head, allowing the reader to experience what that character experiences at the moment he or she does. Rivet Your Readers shows how to avoid creating narrative distance–what writers sometimes do that makes our stories read as though we’re telling the story about the character instead of seeing the story unfold through the character’s eyes.

Other books on the writing craft teach this, but if you need to learn quickly or want to keep a handy reference/reminder with you at all times (in the handbag!), consider this little book. It spells out in simple language what to incorporate and what to delete in your manuscript before you submit it to an agent or editor. Or when your critique partners criticize you about POV!

The front and back cover designs leave a lot to be desired, but this book’s purpose is not to teach you about designing a cover. I recommend you get your hands on this little gem by Jill Elizabeth Nelson as soon as you can. Even if you think you prefer an omniscient POV, Rivet Your Readers will at least  help you consider your options.

What kinds of challenges have you experienced in trying to deepen POV? Which books on the writing craft have assisted you?

6 responses to “The Best Little Book About Writing Deep Point of View

  1. Sounds like a good investment. I’ll have to check it out! A challenge I sometimes encounter is focusing too much on technique before the draft is done. I’m always telling myself, “tweak it later, just get it down for now!” 😉


    • Sparks, I know exactly what you mean! My method is to write a few chapters, revise, then write a few more. When I have an entire draft, I go through it many times–looking for ways to improve motivation/reaction units for my main character and to deepen POV, which usually improves the voice at the same time.


  2. schillingklaus says:

    Old-school omniscient narration à la Fielding is my one true way to go. Deep POV has never been an option for me and will never be.


  3. Good article, Cynthia!


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