The Career Author Podcast: Episode 80 – What’s the Point (of View)?

Choosing how you tell a story can be confusing. With help from the Fussy Librarian, Zach and J. explore how to determine the best point of view for your work. You will discover the importance of strong narration and more:

  • Zach’s favorite app for keeping track of everything he needs to do + some of his top tips for using the app effectively
  • The importance of being realistic about what you can accomplish in any given day and prioritizing your most essential tasks
  • How point of view (POV) works in fiction writing and what the different types of point of view are
  • How POV expectations vary by genre
  • The POV the guys usually choose for their collaborative work, what they do in their individual work, and why they’ve made these choices
  • How J. and Zach feel about different points of view in the stories they read
  • Why you need to make this decision early on in the planning process
  • How to decide what the best POV is for your own work

Plus, submit your ways and hacks to The Career Podcast in the comments section! https://thecareerauthor.com/waysandhacks/

The Career Author Podcast is a podcast where co-authors J. Thorn and Zach Bohannon share their struggles and successes as full-time authors, advice for improving your writing craft, and honest discussions of what it takes to build a successful career as an author.

Thanks to our newest Patrons: Gladys Strickland, Brent Young

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Choosing a narrative point of view for your story – https://www.thefussylibrarian.com/newswire/for-authors/2019/06/20/choosing-a-narrative-point-of-view-for-your-story

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The Career Author YouTube Channel – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmIYVcr1UdWgSvYpb3Ol3xg 

Story Levels – http://www.storylevels.com

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12 thoughts on “The Career Author Podcast: Episode 80 – What’s the Point (of View)?

  • Morning guys. Breaking Bad is available on Netflix UK 🙂.
    Great Hack Zach. Have you told J about this? I tend to have a to-do-list of one thing each day because I like the satisfaction of completing. I keep a longer list but it’s more of an aspiration list.
    Interesting discussion today, especially second person. “The Hobbit” is written mostly in the third person but Tolkein talks to the reader in the book which is second person. In “Jane Eyre” (I read it at school just after it was originally published 🙂) near the end, the author, Charlotte Bronte, states “Reader, I married him.” “Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy” also has this second person stuff which is called authorial intrusion or Metafiction. It was common in Victorian times but is still used.
    In a way all stories are set within a second person framework because when you open a book to start reading you are effectively hearing the author say directly to you, “settle down and let me tell you this story…”
    First person is also interesting. I would never set out to write a story in first person but I wrote a short story recently (for Rockapoc) and when I got to the end I found that it was in first person present. Spooky 👽. I wonder if I could write a novel in the first person?

    • I think first person present tense can make the story feel more urgent, like you’re there and it’s really happening. This is probably why it’s so popular in YA. When you’re a teenager, everything feels more important. First person with alternating characters doesn’t bother me if each character has a distinct voice.

      As a writer, I think it’s best to use the point of view that serves the story. Sometimes I need to play around with different points of view before I find the one I want to stick with. As a reader, if the story is well written, I don’t really care what the point of view is.

      Great podcast, guys! It really made me think. I didn’t realize I had so many thoughts on point of view!

  • I have been thinking of what would be a subtle t-shirt slogan for The Career Author. I think we found it: “They’ll ship it right to you”
    Nice app, Zach. I have been using .todo extension in VS Code to handle todos for me. But maybe I should get an app so I can have it across all devices rather than just at my main computer. Have you looked at trello?
    Also, you commented that you tracked your times as well. Do you check your times after you complete the task i.e. do you do any auditing of things after the fact?

    Regarding the main topic: I feel like most genre fiction has a common point of view and if you want to be a career author you are going to have a hard time not picking the main one. I was surprised you guys were doing a topic on it given that most of your listeners seem to have finished a few books from the listener survey data.

    Finally J, I am crushed they shipped Kessel to the Coyotes. I mean I am happy that I get to see more of him (I am in SoCal) since he was my favorite player on the roster, but sad he is gone.

    • I liked Kessel but he’s so irresponsible with the puck. Maybe the Coyotes can put him on the half-boards during the power play where he’s least likely to hurt them defensively.

      “They’ll ship it right to you.”

      I sound like one of those late night infomercials from the 90s.

      • “Write it and never forget it”

        His whole line is irresponsible with the puck, but I agree with your point. One of the reasons I like him is just tha the looks like the least hockey player of all hockey players. Shows me that what you look like has nothing to do with your skill.

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