Thursday, July 24, 2014

Showing with Deep POV by Maria Michaels

Maria Michaels
Dora here, waving from the RWA national conference in San Antonio! For our readers who plan to attend ACFW, I'll be sharing a little about my conference experience next Thursday. Today, please help me welcome Maria Michaels, who is discussing a character's point of view. Welcome, Maria!

Thank you, Dora, for inviting me here today. I’m so honored to be among such accomplished authors. It made it all a bit intimidating as I tried to think of a post on writing advice! So I decided to approach this from the perspective of a voracious reader first, and a writer second.

I’ve been writing for more than ten years, but if you had asked me about “deep POV” (point of view) when I started out, I’d have given you a blank stare. I might have said that I didn’t know anything about that branch of the government (don’t they all have initials? FBI, CIA, ATF).

As a reader, I prefer certain authors to others but never understood why. Many readers are like me and can’t necessarily pinpoint what draws them into a story, but I’d be willing to bet that nine times out of ten it’s because the author has mastered the art of deep POV.

Deep POV puts us in the character’s head, so we can experience everything exactly as the protagonist does. It removes the distance between the reader and the protagonist. When you get right down to it, deep POV is the best kind of showing.

For instance, if you change the point of view of the protagonist from “her mother would arrive tomorrow” to “Mom would arrive tomorrow” you have closed some distance.

Don’t forget that deep POV also involves giving each of your characters a unique “voice”. We’re not going to hear the same thoughts expressed from an 80-year-old grandfather that we do from a 25 year old woman. Make sure their POV is unique and distinctive and shows who they are at their core.

I’d love you to share some examples of how you were able to deepen POV.


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Vera Carrington loves her newly renovated home and her cafe, The Bean, but with a balloon mortgage looming over head and a man from her past ready to bounce on her misfortune, she may have to face the agonizing decision of keeping one and selling the other.

Deputy Sheriff, Ryan Colton, is a new man in Christ. His days as a flamboyant pro-circuit skier are behind him, but to help Vera keep her home and her business, he agrees to coach her for an upcoming open ski tournament. He even agrees to hand over the purse if he should win.

Can Vera beat the odds and win the tournament? Will Ryan save the day, or will they both learn to trust God, no matter the outcome?

Meet Maria: When early onset stage fright dashed dreams of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame status, Maria Michaels tackled her first book in 2010, and now the people and voices that occupy her head refuse to leave.

She no longer sings unless you count randomly bursting into song to annoy her children (and the dogs).

Maria lives in northern California with her family, including two beagles, one who can say ‘hello’ and the other who can feel a pea through several pillows.

10 comments:

  1. I agree, deep POV draws me into a story every time. Great post and loved your sense of humor peeking through:)

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  2. I so enjoyed this post, and I am chuckling at the people and voices that won't leave your head.☺️Good luck with your books.

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  3. Loved the idea of deep POV being confused with the alphabet soup of government agencies. He went undercover, you know, deep POV. :)

    Enjoyed it, Maria!

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  4. Ha! Love it, Sandra. I'm glad someone else appreciates my brand of humor.

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  5. I'm with Tanya, deep POV pulls me right in.

    Dora - I'm so jealous! I'd love to be in San Antonio. I hope you're enjoying the Riverwalk.

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    1. Just walked a short stretch of it tonight. It's stunning!

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  6. You're so right, Maria. Nothing pulls me out of a story more than head hopping or distance from the character. Thanks for visiting today!

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  7. For me as a reader and a writer, deep POV is key to deepening emotion and reader involvement with the story. It can be tricky because of lot of the older stories we love and maybe that formed our ideas of what story and especially romance stories should be just don't use deep POV consistently. Things like other characters' thoughts or how the POV character looks, that the POV character couldn't possible know. Doesn't stop me enjoying the stories, but it does pull me back, making it clear that I'm reading a story rather than experiencing it.
    Nice post, Maria!

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  8. Looks like a great story, Maria!
    It's funny, before I started studying deep POV, I thought I knew what it was based on the name and that I knew how to use it. Boy, did I get a wake up call! :) Thanks for sharing!

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