by Gail Gaymer Martin
I have learned that deep POV brings a story to life. Deep POV is the pure viewpoint of the character in a scene. First person is more personal and provides the deepest form of POV possible. Yet authors create the feeling of deep POV by avoiding phrases such as I believe and I think and even more by avoiding dialogue tags, the said and asked that connects the speakers name to the dialogue, but they keep our writing from using deep POV. By cutting the tags, authors can use more meaningful techniques such as the speaker’s action, emotion, thoughts or description to show the speaker.
When the reversion of rights arrived on my older Love Inspired novels, I wanted to publish them for new readers. Reverted was my Loving series, stories set on Lake Michigan at Bay Breeze Resort in the fictitious town of Loving. When I reviewed the first book, Loving Treasures, I edited it to deepen the POV by removing useless phrases and unneeded dialogue tags. Here are some examples.
Original: “I want to spend time with you, Bev, but it’s not happening,” he said, giving her a helpless look and taking her hand in his. We need to make some changes. I’ve been adamant about just being friends, but maybe I was wrong.
Change: He took her hand in his. AI wanted to spend time with you, Bev, but it’s not happening.@ He gave her a helpless look. A I’ve been adamant about just being friends, but maybe I was wrong. We need to make some changes.
Original: Why the changes? Bev asked, as her heart kicked against her ribs.
Change: Her heart kicked against her ribs. Why the changes?
Notice in both these examples you learn more about the characters, see their actions and are not distracted by the said and asked which is unnecessary since the speaker is already clear.
Lead in: He turned her to face him. I’m learning, Bev. I care about you more than words can say, and the kids are growing on me. I realize that along with the problems they can be pure fun.
Original: Bev let his words wash over her. Dale and she had spent a great deal of time together in the past weeks. His kisses had deepened, and her longing had grown for them to be a family. Thanks for your honesty. Today she realized that her worst fear could happen again.
Change: His words washed over her. Thanks for your honesty. They had spent a great deal of time together in the past weeks. His kisses had deepened, and her longing had grown for them to be a family. Yet her worst fear could happen again.
Original: She knew they were flirting with each other, but she’d become too inexperienced to handle it.
Change: They were flirting with each other, but she’d become too inexperienced to handle it.
As you evaluate your work, look for phrases she knew.Bring your story to life with deep POV. #acfwblog @GailGMartin #amwriting Click To Tweet
Here’s a few lines for you to deepen POV.
She wondered what he really wanted. Ex: What did he really wanted?
He knew he loved her.
She thought he seemed to care about her.
He asked himself if he could tell her the truth.
Multi-award-winner and bestselling novelist, Gail Gaymer Martin has 80 published novels with over 4 million books sold. She is the author of Writers Digest, Writing the Christian Romance and is a presenter at writing workshop and keynote speaker at a variety of women’s event. Loving Treasures will be released this month. Gail worked as a counselor and later a university instructor in Michigan. She now lives in Sedona, AZ.