My Biggest Writing (and Life) Struggle: Point of View

All week, I revise a novel’s point of view. It’s hard! The narrator tells the story through the lens of just one character, so I have to be sure his knowledge comes from what only he experiences. Even though I know everything as the author, I can only reveal to the reader what comes from the main character’s point of view. 

It’s limiting! It binds me to dialogue and observation. I just want to tell everything quickly and obviously, but this would be no fun at all for the reader.

Studying point of view alerts me to exactly how limiting it is. There’s a whole larger story that I deliberately don’t let a character–or a reader– access yet. The narrator exists within clear boundaries of a chosen viewpoint for a very specific reason:

It makes a better story.

I have to remember my limited point of view. It’s just one character’s lens.

I love thinking of God as an Author who knows the whole story. I’m sitting here within those boundaries–accepting what I cannot know and cannot do–and surrendering to the joy of the whole story.

One day, I’ll read it.

Have you had that experience of shifting to God’s point of view and suddenly feeling differently about your life? 

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0 Responses

  1. Keep up the hard work!  The constraint of perspective feels like it is becoming a lost art;  it seems to have been abandoned by some authors/publishers.   Abraham Verghese ignored it so blatanly in Cutting for Stone that it became a serious distraction to an interesting story.   

  2. What an interesting summer project and such a great life lesson provided by a writing task!  Writing is so enlightening!   Have fun!