Point of View

Storytelling

Four Challenges of Nonlinear Narratives

A typical story opens when a problem appears and moves forward steadily in time until that problem is resolved. This linear progression is popular for good reason. It’s easier for us humans with our puny three-dimensional existence to understand, and it keeps us guessing what … read more »

Writing

A Beginner’s Guide to Epistolary Writing

Old Letter and Photos

Many writers have a pet narrative technique they think is underused and underappreciated. For me, it’s epistolary writing. While this framing premise has its challenges, it can also be wonderfully creative and powerful. For those who haven’t tried it, allow me to give you a … read more »

Writing

When to Narrate a Villain’s Point of View

Through a doorway, Barty Crouch Jr kneels by Voldemort's char

Most writers know that their important protagonists should have the lion’s share of viewpoint scenes. However, some stories need another point of view to communicate information the protagonists don’t know. Often, that point of view comes from the primary antagonist. Unfortunately, using a villain’s point … read more »

Writing

Five Essentials of Omniscient Narration

What do Discworld, Alice in Wonderland, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and Lord of the Rings have in common? If you guessed “omniscient narration,” then you’re right, but you also cheated by reading my title. No matter – I will still share the secrets of this powerful but challenging … read more »

Writing

Five Perspective Mistakes to Avoid

Narrative perspective comes in many forms. In first-person limited, the narrator and the protagonist are one and the same, and the audience knows only what the character knows. In third-person omniscient, the narrator is free to rain down information from on high and use whatever voice … read more »