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Thread: Using POV character's name

  1. #11
    Member KHK's Avatar
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    Foxee, thank you for the detailed debriefing.
    Of course, I am not mad! This may not be immediately evident from this thread (or not at all), but I actually am a big proponent of clear terminology. I guess I was just trying to mask my atrocious lack of knowledge in this regard. And throwing the "protagonist" into the mix did not help my case an iota. So it is I who should apologize

    In any case, the question of the narration referring to the third person POV by name still stands.
    I understand that it's perfectly valid and normal to do so, and only want to know if this may harm the reader's focus on the their person/POV's perspective.

  2. #12
    Write from the subconscious. Edit from necessity. Yes, you are overthinking.
    Quote Originally Posted by KHK View Post
    First of all, a disclaimer: I may be improperly using the term "POV", so let me provide my definition and then feel free to tell me how wrong I am
    For me, POV is not necessarily a character telling the story in the first person. It may be told in the third person, but still concentrating on the character's thoughts and emotions, and depicting the events the way the character sees/experiences them.

    So, with that said, and assuming I am writing such a "third-person POV" story, how would you feel if that person were to be occasionally referred to by his/her name, as opposed to strictly and exclusively pronouns? And I mean not by collocutors in the dialogues, but rather as part of the narration.

    Let's say, I have a female character named Jane.
    Consider the following 2 variants:

    as opposed to


    Obviously, if this were in the first person, there would be no such question. No (moderately sane) person refers to herself by name.

    In the case of third person, though, I suspect that using the character's name may be detrimental to the reader's focus on "being in the character's head", as if adding more indirection.

    What do you fine folks think?
    Is this a legitimate concern, or am I overthinking it?

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