POV vs Perspective in a Brief Complaint

Frustration simmered close to the surface for me today. It was a point of contention—how to interpret “point of view”—between me and pretty much everyone else. I argue that you cannot expect students to know you want the character’s opinion or perspective when you say “point of view” because I believe it’s first taught as first/second/third person. As a writer, that’s also automatically the first thing I think of. It’s not that it can’t be or shouldn’t be interpreted as perspective, but I don’t believe the student should be penalized for it. In fact, I think it means the question needs clarification in order to get exactly what you want. I bet if you did that, everyone would be a lot happier. I sure would! It’s possible this is only a matter of contention for me since I write, and I think about point of view in the traditional sense of the position of the narrator to the story. Who’s with me? Who else thinks dissecting stories makes regular life just plain difficult? Pretty sure I’m on a separate page all the time. But what’s the fun in being normal?

Speaking of point of view, I feel the urge to write a story in second person. It would most likely be extremely irritating to me and the reader. I’m inclined to do it for kicks, though. It’ll be short. It’ll be nonsense, but it’ll be a great exercise, right? Or am I merely trying to justify something pointless? Probably the latter.

Happy writing!


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