Point Of View In Fiction

Point Of View in fiction – also known as POV for short – refers to two things:

  • Whose head is the reader borrowing, so to speak, to view the action, and,
  • How intimate or close up, is the viewpoint.

Different people use different terms for the various points of view, and more confusingly, sometimes use the same terms to mean different things. So I am not saying that what I share here regarding terminology is definitive.

Don’t get hung up on the terminology though – the descriptions of each point of view are the important thing. And you do need to understand those. I have done critiques of fiction writing for many years and one of the biggest problems I find is difficulties with Point of View.

I will do my best to break it down here so that it makes sense to you.

Categories of Point Of View In Fiction

Point of view in fiction can be broken down into the following categories:

It’s essential to know at all times which point of view you’re using, to know why you’re using it. It should be a considered decision for you. And above all make sure you use well the character’s point of view rather than the author’s.

I invite you to explore the pages on the different points of view, and get to know them well so you can use them masterfully to get the effect you want.