Generally I don’t think about point of view while writing. I just write the story as it comes to me. And I think, at least in drafting, that is how it should be.
One thing oft repeated in workshop last semester by Fiona was that to change the point of view is to change the story. How it feels, what it says, what it means, how it leaves you. (Of course, this is my own paraphrase, not a quote from Fiona.) I nodded my head because it made sense. But it is really striking home in an exaggerated way right now.
Last semester I tried to write a story about two people. Then I realized that it ought to only be about one of them. The point of view lodged firmly in Character A’s head, and Character B became little more than a prop.
But I always intended to write Character B’s story as well. The lives of A and B intersect in this one event, and it affects them both very differently; yet the effects on each of them are connected. So here I am sitting down to write B’s story, and suddenly I find myself hopelessly stuck.
The reason is because the situation that brings them together is based on a lie. That lie shapes the situation and is what makes anything at stake in the story. But the trick is that only Character A knows about this lie, because he is the one telling it. Character B is just as affected by it, but does not know about it, and never will.
This is all part of the larger story involving both of them. The goal is to write two stories that are connected, but can be read separately. I’m used to writing in third-person-attached; but on its own, Character B’s story will be a much weaker story, because I don’t know how to let the reader know about the lie.
I suppose if I wrote in third-omniscient, I could manage something. But that doesn’t feel right to me. It doesn’t feel like the story that wants to be written. It would feel like squishing the two stories together.
How do you go about solving perspective woes?