Spotted today on Publisher’s Marketplace:
May 27, 2008 Children’s:Young Adult. Cindy Pon’s SPIRIT BOUND, set in an ancient kingdom based on Chinese folklore, myth and magic, to Virginia Duncan at Greenwillow Books, in a three-book deal, for publication in April 2009, by Bill Contardi at Brandt & Hochman (NA).
Ancient kingdom?! Chinese folklore, myth, and magic?! I’m marking my calendar for April 2009 — this is just the kind of book I love. And check out her blog a little sweet, a little sour, which is in my sidebar.
Before I started writing, point of view was only something I’d ever identified in grade eleven English class. I’m a voracious reader of fiction, but it never crossed my mind that a book might be written in first person, third person, objective, omniscient, close, limited, whatever. And I had no awareness of a preference for what I liked to read best — though in retrospect I realize most of my favourite books are either in third limited or omniscient. Indeed, I was well into the first draft of my book before I realized it was something I might want to pay more attention to (No, Lucy, third limited salted with omniscient for flavour and head hopping when you get lazy is *not* usually an effective style).
Now, I angst over it. Will readers care about my heroine if they only encounter her in the third person? Will they be bored of her yapping half way through if I tell the tale in first? Do I have a strong enough narrative voice to write omniscient? Will I get everything in if I stay limited?
And if any of these terms confuse you, Dear Reader (note rarely attempted second person POV), and you want to know what I am talking about, I highly recommend Ursula LeGuin’s Steering the Craft on this question and so many more relating to questions of more advanced writing style and technique.