I'm out guest posting at my Crooked Cat friend Angela Wren's blog where it's always so lovely to pop over to visit her in France. Sometimes when I've visited, I've given an update of my writing journey but today my post is sharing a technique I find helpful when creating my novels with multiple characters and subsequently multiple points if view (POV).
You'll find the whole post at Angela Wren's Blog HERE.
But since it's a tip that might be useful to others only popping into this blog I'm REBLOGGING part of it below.
"Just after The Beltane Choice was published, a reviewer asked when the sequel would be published. I was stunned! I hadn’t considered a sequel, or even a series for that matter. However, I’d given secondary character Brennus of Garrigill a raw deal in The Beltane Choice. He then became the focus of Books 2 and 3 of my Celtic Fervour Series since his story is a convoluted and fairly long one. Across Books 2 and 3, Brennus is joined by two other main characters: fellow-Brigante Ineda; and an Ancient Roman officer named Gaius Livanus Valerius (Ineda’s captor). Leila is a strong secondary character in Book 4, but I decided three POVs were enough to handle, so her part in the tale is told via the POV of Brennus.
As I wrote Books 2 and 3, I needed to come up with something that saved me from confusing the POVs.
Ø One simple strategy was to use the common tactic of having one character’s POV last for a complete scene, or a complete chapter.
Ø A second, and it’s probably not original – I used a different colour of font for each character throughout the typing of the manuscript.
Seeing each chapter in a particular colour also meant that when I minimised the pages to a 10% or 25% view, I could see how the balance of viewpoints was going across the whole story.
From that point forward, my manuscript writing life has been one of COLOUR.
Agricola’s Bane, Book 4 of the series, is told across five different viewpoints. My Garrigill clan members Nith and Enya are balanced by the main character of General Agricola, Commander of the Roman legions. Two other Garrigill clan members, Ruoridh and Beathan, play smaller though still main character roles. I’ve used five different font colours in my manuscript which have hopefully kept me straight regarding the consistency of POV as I created the story. I’m now eagerly awaiting editor feedback on how those five viewpoints have worked out. Look out for Book 4 being published soon with Ocelot Press.
Book 5 is on the drawing table and regardless of the amount of main characters in it I’ll be using different font colours to keep my POV straight!
My POV tip is a simple one, but perhaps the readers of this blog can suggest other useful techniques?