Cynthia D'Alba talks on POV and Giveaways!

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Point of View – It’s Not Just A Camera Lens
By: Cynthia D’Alba

Hi All I’m Cynthia D’Alba. My novella A COWBOY’S SEDUCTION is one of the sexy novellas available in the BROUGHT TO HIS KNEES collection, available for a limited time. There is more information at the end of my post about this wonderfully, sensual collection.

Today we are discussing Deep Point of View (POV). Over the years, I’ve heard or read POV described many different ways from many different authors and lecturers. I’ve thought about it, read books conscious of how the author is using points of view, and I’ve finally decided this is how I view deep POV.

The first explanation for point of view –and what I consider to be a simplest form–is that POV like looking through the lens of a camera. What you see through that lens is what your character sees. If your character can’t see it, then you can’t write it in character POV. It is a description of what your character is seeing in front of him/her. No interpretation, just an observation.

From A Cowboy’s Seduction, ©2014, Cynthia D’Alba
From my heroine’s view: Her gaze walked its way up a pair of faded jeans over muscular thighs to a tight ass.

Well, that’s a beginning but it’s far from everything POV can entail. 

As we move deeper in the character’s POV and really see through a character’s POV, then how the character interprets what he/she is observing becomes important.

For example, three people are looking at a woman in a yellow dress.
Person one is florist. Her POV might be, “That sunflower yellow dress looks great.”
Person two is a teacher. Her POV might be, “That school bus yellow dress looks great.”
Person three is a man. His POV might be, “Great yellow dress.”

Each person saw the same dress but their description of the yellow is drawn from their own personal and every day lives. But this is only a visual example. POV also entails all the senses besides sight… touch, taste, hearing and smell.

To really get into your character’s POV, we need to dig a little deeper. How does your character interpret the sensory input for a scene? For example, if your character grew up active in scouting, spent many nights camping under the stars, cooking over an open flame, the smell of wood burning might evoke a pleasurable mood. However, if your character’s home burned down and she lost everything in the fire, the smell of wood burning might evoke a flight or fight response, so a romantic bonfire becomes something much different. Or if your character is a fireman, the smell of burning wood might spring him/her into a call to action.

This is one of the reasons we writers spend so much time learning about our characters’ histories. Without knowing your character, you can’t know how he/she will interpret the sensory inputs.

In some ways, writing in deep POV is a lot like being an actor. You are no longer “you,” but are someone else, with that person’s background, life experiences, education, prejudices all influencing character response.

Let me give you a real life example. I was at my local chapter meeting, i.e. Diamond State Romance Authors in Arkansas. We were sitting around chatting about how unusually heavy the traffic had been. Amy said, “It’s because of all the vets driving through town as they left. It’s slowing everything down.” My reaction was, “Why are a bunch of veterinarians driving through town? Leaving after the racing season is over, I guess.” Two of our military veterans’ responses were, “Why are there groups of military veterans driving through town?” What Amy was talking about was CORVETTES driving through town after a Corvette convention. My response was triggered by the fact I had just spend $200 on my dog at my vet’s office. The veterans responded according to their backgrounds. Each of us had a different response backed on our personal experiences.

Writing from your character’s POV should be similar in experience.

Another example, a friend was writing from the POV of a physician. She (the author) has a non-medical background. She made a comment about the doctor’s heart “lurching” at the sight of the heroine, but we are in his POV. A medical person, especially a doctor, wouldn’t think “lurch.” We’re trained to think “skip a beat” or “palpitate.” A visceral response is second nature, something that happens without thinking. So her doctor’s heart would probably “skip”, not lurch, although they mean the same thing.

If your character if a gardener, (s)he might think in terms of flowers or plants or dirt quality when analyzing. A chef might think in terms of flavors, or aromas, or spices, but a chef probably wouldn’t think in terms of dirt quality, as a gardener probably wouldn’t describe something in terms of flavors.

So dig into your character’s head. Become your character when you right. React and interpret based on the character you’ve developed, not on how you–the author–sees the world.

Thanks for coming by today. Hope it was helpful.

Cynthia D'Alba: Award winning author Cynthia D’Alba was born and raised in Arkansas. After being gone for seventeen years, she’s thrilled to be back home living on the banks of an eight-thousand acre lake. When she’s not reading, writing or plotting, she’s doorman for her two dogs, cook, housekeeper and chief bottle washer for her husband and slave to a noisy, messy parrot. She loves to chat online with friends and fans.  
Find her on the web.
Twitter: @CynthiaDAlba

To compile BROUGHT TO HIS KNEES, 11 acclaimed romance authors came together to give the reader a real treat…A world of men brought to their knees by love. Each author will push their hero to his limit in the name of love.
Grab this steamy collection of 11 SCORCHING HOT stories for one LOW LOW price. A real STEAL at $0.99 Enjoy A.M. Griffin, Amy Ruttan, Anya Richards, Cynthia D'Alba, Danica Avet, Felice Fox, Jennifer Kacey, Lynne Silver, Sabrina York, Sayde Grace & Tina Donahue as they bring their hero to his knees for love.
Cynthia D'Alba's latest release is...
A Cowboy’s Seduction

One exhausted cowboy + One uptight account x A tropical resort = A hot seduction. But who is seducing whom?

Brock Wade has raised his brothers and sister since their parents’ deaths fourteen years ago. All work and no vacation can make a cowboy a tad grumpy, or at least that’s what his family and crew believe. Brock wants to spend the two weeks before Christmas working as usual. Instead he’s forced by his siblings to take a vacation to the Sand Castle Resort…a vacation he doesn’t want to a Caribbean resort he’s never heard of. He’s sure he’ll be miserable the whole time.
Natalie Diamond is dreaming of getting out of icy Memphis and down to her parents’ oceanfront condo for a couple of weeks of rest and warmth. When her parents accept an out-of-town invitation, she’s sure she’ll be stuck at home watching it sleet and snow. But instead of leaving Natalie shivering, her parents send her on an all-expense paid trip to the Sand Castle Resort.
A casual friendship over drinks rapidly evolves into a hot seduction, which is great until feelings get involved. When vacation is over, Brock and Natalie are forced to make the difficult decision to walk away or see where life might lead them.
But falling in love in two weeks isn’t possible. Right?

A Cowboy's Seduction is part of this multi-book boxed set, which is 99c only for limited time!

Brought To His Knees
The Alpha male. Strong. In control. Letting no one and nothing rule him…until he meets the one, and all bets are off. The world tilts, the bed rocks, and suddenly that tough guy finds himself Brought to His Knees—in more ways than one.

This collection of ten hot to erotic novellas and one short erotic novel will take you on journeys of lust, love, and adventure, leave you breathless and quite possibly in need of a cold shower.

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  1. Those are excellent examples! I love the Vette/Vet/vet one!
    Getting deep into pov is fun! :)

  2. You explained the POV so well and it makes a lot of sense. It makes the character believable and most likely, exciting.
    Thanks for your comment on my blog. We have a big spread and it's a lot of work and cost running our dairy operation. It's an old farm and the buildings needs lots of repairs and upkeep. I think it almost time to retire as we are getting too old for all that hard work.

    Good luck with your books.

  3. Congrats and best of luck with your new release, Cynthia!

  4. Thank you. This non-writing reader found that fascinating. And an excellent explanation about why some shifts in POV fail.

  5. You definitely do have to become your character. Great advice.

  6. Wonderful examples! I had to laugh at the image of a group of veterinarians driving through town. :)

  7. I love your examples! Nothing pulls me out of a story like a description that rings false for a characters. Great post!

  8. Hi Friends, Cynthia said she's been replying to your comments but cyber space seems to be eating them all up!

    So sorry about this...we are working to iron out this problem. If anyone else seems to be having this problem please tweet me or FB message me about it.

  9. POV seems like it would be difficult to write, as you want to be realistic, yet not stereotype a character based upon their career and relationships.

  10. You really need to know your characters well in order to get their POV right!

  11. Awesome thoughts. You really do want to experience the story as if you were one of the characters. I mean, how else could it be an immerse reading experience?

  12. One tricky thing about writing romance was that often the book was from two different POVs. So you had to avoid "head hopping." I don't really have that problem in middle grade/chapter books, since the stories are usually told from only one POV.

  13. great examples of POVs for a reader like me!

  14. Thanks for the great tips. This used to be something I struggled with. Now it's one of my favorite parts of writing.

  15. Wishing Cynthia the best of luck. I liked her examples of deep point of view. Very helpful! :)