Last May, in my post Random Vs. Predictable, I waxed rather poetic on the challenge of writing books with predictable pov changes. That was all shot to hell in December. I began a new story that would not obey this stricture I had set for Vrythea’s (then Hatu Napor’s) stories.
For starters, it has a whopping four (maybe even FIVE) points of view. That’s at least twice as many as I usually like to work with, but all of my pov characters have important parts to play in the story, and they won’t all always be in the same place. Even when they are in the same place, they won’t all be doing the same thing, or even at the same precise location.
The plot is also slightly more complicated, at least in the beginning of the book/series. Degrees of Subtlety and Fairy-Touched are both much more straightforward, plotwise, than what I’ve got going in For Want of Impossible Things. In FWOIT, I’ll have pov characters wandering all over the landscape to accomplish the story.
Also, of the possible five, four of these characters have a lot of growing and changing to do. One is arrogant and hidebound; one needs to come into his own power; another needs to grow up out of being a spoiled brat; and the fourth needs to learn the value of true friendship and how it can give him courage to do what he’d never contemplate on his own. They all need to learn to trust not only each other, but also themselves.
I haven’t embarked on any stories this complicated in a long, long time. Quite frankly, I think I needed FWOIT to teach me an important lesson on working with the story, instead of trying to force it into some preconceived pattern. With that in mind, I intend to look at what I have of DoS and FT to see what, if anything, I’ve neglected to include in what I have of their narratives and their outlines. I think part of the reason why I’ve been stalled on those stories so long is because I’ve refused, point-blank, to see how loosening up about pov switches may help me progress on those stories.
So, with the new year, I have a new mindset, one I hope will give me the ability to once again progress on all of Vrythea’s stories.