Post by ScintillaMyntan on Jun 16, 2021 19:59:51 GMT -6
My creative writing instructor in university gave us an interesting lesson. He showed us this historical photo of the Little Rock Nine going to school and said that if this were a story, it would be obvious to tell it from the point of view of one of the prominent figures in the image: the schoolgirl or the yelling woman. But he had us look at various other people in the photo: "What is this person thinking? What would the same event look like to them? What were they doing this morning?" Everyone has a story.
The point is even if you've got a story idea, you could get some interesting alternatives by writing from a different character's point of view, maybe someone less central to what looks like the main plot. I was telling someone about that lesson once and he was like, "So it's like if you told Harry Potter from the point of view of Neville." Well, maybe that one wouldn't quite work, but it would still be pretty cool to have a story about the Chosen One in which the protagonist is actually some classmate of the Chosen One.
Have you ever written from a less obvious point of view? Have you ever made a deliberate choice about who, or what sort of person, your point of view character is? I guess this is a problem familiar to people who've played roleplaying games, where the setting and circumstances are already laid out for you and you're devising a character to experience it as, or to anyone who has chosen a plot for a story before the character.
I love stories from an alternative POV. I know of one about a world of superheroes and the protagonist is the personal assistant of the world's most famous superhero. She ends up being crucial to the plot, of course, and solving the mystery but it was because she was on the side lines that made it possible.
The problem with this, though, is that we still need to make sure the character is essential to the story evolving the way it does...they must be involved with the plot and have their own goals, desires, hopes, and actions taken to make those things happen.
I try to make my side characters have essential pieces to the puzzle of the plot. I don't know if I always succeed with this, but I try to do it for as many side characters as possible. I tend to have A LOT of side characters. With my latest rewrite, I realized one character simply exists for the convenience of my main characters. So I fleshed her out more and gave her a backstory that influences the plot. Just a tiny bit, but enough to guide my characters down a different path than they would've gone down without he being in the story at all.
Guess what I'm saying is...if we tell a story from the perspective of someone who isn't directly involved in the MAIN action of the plot, then we must give them a reason for being the narrator. An influence. A unique voice.
The show Umbrella Academy has an Thing that happens across a two episode arc. The first episode focuses on the main group and their efforts to thwart this disastrous Thing. The second episode is about the guy who accidentally causes the Thing to happen by a twisted course of events and he runs into the main group at one point and because of them...and this minuscule interaction...the Thing happens. It was a super fun arc and interesting to see how it played out from two different (yet essential) perspectives.
Whoa, this question is really making me think. I'm not sure I have told a story from a less-obvious viewpoint.
What comes to mind is the later events in my Falcons Saga. By the end of the series, my main character has become something of a dreaded living legend. When the reader reads his POV, they see him as a very flawed, misfit-type person, so there's no feasible way for him to seem legendary in his own eyes--he knows he's a mess. It's when the story filters him through other characters that he attains this larger-than-life, dreadful, mysterious, more-than-human kind of aura.
And I do remember that writing about him through others' interpretations was way more fun than writing through his true sad, angry self. But both perspectives were needed to achieve what I wanted in the story.
Anyway, I love the photograph challenge. The professor sounds wise, indeed. I'm tempted now to look up random photos and see what stories pop out of them. Hmm... this would be a fun challenge for the prompts forum...
I've never done this either but it would have to be done from a character who's there but not perceived as a main character. Like maybe if C3PO told the Star Wars stories. He there but not percieved as a major player.
Alatariel: Pelwrath, is the remodel a surprise?
Oct 24, 2021 18:03:58 GMT -6
FoxxGlove: Looks like these Halloween entries are going to be sooooooo close.
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HDSimplicityy: Tonight I learned that critiquing other peoples' critiques is not a custom in some groups. Is that even true? I did it in school and I think we do that here.
Oct 25, 2021 20:02:22 GMT -6
HDSimplicityy: Im not sure they will enjoy reading chapters of my novel every several weeks with the content.
Oct 25, 2021 20:05:42 GMT -6
Alatariel: I don't think I've ever critiqued someone else's crit
Oct 25, 2021 21:08:46 GMT -6
HDSimplicityy: I mean clarifying your writing
Oct 25, 2021 21:43:06 GMT -6
pelwrath: Day 3 of remodeling, kind of a surprise. She know that not what. Get new electrical covers, put molding back, closet shelves, and start assembling new furniture. Wife is refinishing desk.
Oct 26, 2021 7:34:33 GMT -6
pelwrath: I hope to be less tired and return to scoring tonight.
Oct 26, 2021 8:36:37 GMT -6