Facets of a Muse

Examining the guiding genius of writers everywhere

Omniscient POV versus Head-Hopping

4 Comments

Love this! Great reminder, and good explanations of each POV. Reminds me that when one is a bestselling, multi-genre author, breaking the “rules” on a regular basis bugs those of us who are trying to work within them (yes, N.R.) 😉

Myths of the Mirror

Omniscient

Today, I’m going a little techie for all the writers out there. This is another one of my “learn by failure” posts.

When we write, we strive for stories that will grip our readers. We want an emotional investment, and the best way to do that is to immerse our readers inside our character’s head, heart, and skin, the deeper the better. The reader sees, hears, smells, and experiences what the character does, up close and personal.

When I started writing, I was a point-of-view “head-hopper.” I wanted to share every character’s thoughts and feelings in every scene. My writer’s group rolled their eyes and eventually critiqued it out of me. I learned the hard way – by rewriting my entire book!

Head-hopping is a common glitch in early writing as authors learn the ropes. It’s often confused with a Third Person Omniscient Point of View. So, what’s the difference?

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Author: Julie Holmes, author

Pen names: J. M. Holmes, J. M. Goebel A fiction writer since elementary school (many years ago), and NaNoWriMo annual participant for a decade, I've been published in small press magazines such as "Fighting Chance" and "The Galactic Citizen". I write adult mystery with a touch of romance, mystery with extrasensory elements, contemporary fantasy, and epic fantasy, and I'm represented by the fabulous Cynthia Zigmund of Second City Publishing Services. In real life, I am a technical writer with a family of two teens, a wonderful hubby, one cat (what writer doesn't have cats??), two dogs, four chickens, and more chipmunks, squirrels, and rabbits than any garden should have to deal with. My garden, our hobby farm, and Nature's annual seasons are some of my muses.

4 thoughts on “Omniscient POV versus Head-Hopping

  1. Thanks for sharing, Julie! One of those elements of craft that we all need to pay attention to 🙂 Happy Writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Heehee. I thought this was a great blog post, and yes, Queen Nora immediately sprang to mind. I will say though, that some of her books rank on my all time favorite list 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • So true! I especially enjoy the “In Death” series. I’m reading “The Reef” right now, and the first couple chapters had me shaking my head. Felt like a ping-pong ball 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • I hear you. I think I actually tried to read that one and couldn’t. My favorites of hers are Inner Harbor, Blood Brothers, and Born in Fire (each book a part of a trilogy). The masses love her and she is the undisputed queen of romance. It’s just, you know…rules should apply!

        Liked by 1 person

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