Deep Third Person Limited POV

by Vijay

Answers in bold below


I thank you for your immediate and quick response to my earlier question about logical story and its repercussion on the novel.

The third person limited Deep POV is the hot topic in fiction writing and many authors have shared their knowledge in their blog. I'm trying to rewrite my first act of my WIP, and I came across the following doubts when I wrote.

1. Can a writer switch from Deep POV to normal third person within a scene? He can't be always in the character head during the pace changes (if the writer wishes to increase the pace or in the beginning of a scene).

Answer: Sometimes we are preoccupied with our thoughts and feelings. Sometimes our attention is on what's happening in the world around us, particularly if it is novel, threatening, or urgent. Some characters are more introspective than others. Sometimes we need to pay attention to what we are doing, and other times we don't. Your POV character's attention will shift similarly. So you keep your narration in tune with where the character's attention is drawn from moment to moment.

2. Can we describe every detail which character sees and hears since we are into his/her head? If so, how much detail can a author write in a scene, even though it doesn't contribute much to the plot, but may sooth reader's mind with senses?

Answer: No one takes note of every possible detail in the world around them. We notice what's important to us -- details that are significant, meaningful, novel, threatening, surprising, etc. To recreate the experience of your POV character, keep your narration focused on what the character naturally pays attention to. This can vary according to the character's particular interests. For instance, while walking down a street, an architect's attention may be drawn to features of the buildings, a child's attention might be drawn to a balloon seller, while a spy might notice the undercover policeman doing surveillance.

3. Can a narrator use POV character name when he starts a new sentence or a paragraph? Or should he just specify, He or She?

Answer: Using character names avoids a lot of confusion and is usually the best choice. It makes it easier for the reader to keep track of who is doing what.

However, there are some novels where the main character's name is concealed. It's easier to do this in first person narration, since the reader knows only one character is referred to as "I." Similarly, if your main character is the only female character in the story, you might get away with referring to her only as "she." If you're using second person narration, you might refer to the main character only as "you."

But you have to consider why you want to do this and whether it is appropriate for the story. Are you trying to portray a character with a weak sense of identity, for example?

4. Lastly, how many character POV's are suggested for a romance /family oriented novel written with Deep POV? Up to Five is Okay?

Answer: You only need one POV or main character in any story. Readers like to have a close connection with one character who they imagine themselves to be.

It is common in a romance to use two POV characters (the two romantic leads). Usually the main character is the female lead, while the male lead is the impact character and secondary POV. I suspect this is done to address the reader's anxiety about whether the man is truly the right match for the woman.

Bear in mind that each POV character is the main character of his/her own story. You may only develop one of these stories fully, and that will be the main or primary POV character's story. But some novels try to develop two or three POV characters' stories equally.

There is no hard rule about how many POV characters you can have. However, the more there are, the less of a connection the reader feels with any one character. Too many POV characters creates a kind of objectivity that makes the story feel more like omniscient narration.

I appreciate your kind response to the above questions.

With Warm Regards,


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