I AM SO FURIOUS RIGHT NOW!! WHT ON EARTH WOULD YOU FINISH THE BOOK LIKE THAT?!?!???!?!? I HAVE NO WORDS, UGH!!
My motto is always…
what if the voice inside your head is your soulmate’s
somebody write this novel right now
I volunteer John Green
Don’t volunteer John Green, he will kill the soul mate.
Sara Rees Brennan already wrote this novel(s)
it’s called Unspoken; the sequel is Untold
AND EVERYONE SHOULD TOTALLY READ THEM LIKE WOW WHAT A GOOD
I think this is a marvellously cool way of recommending things… sharing your wish for something, having other people wish for it too, and seeing the chain of wishes go on until a lovely someone says ‘Your wish already came true, but you didn’t know it!’ As if the collected force of people’s wishes changed the past and brought their wish into being.
Sorry to the Future John Green Novel wishers, though. Stole your idea, Future John Green!
We’re not, I’m afraid.
Unmade has Kami and Holly and Jared’s PoVs only.
PoV geekery ahead!
I switched PoVs per book with my first trilogy, and went ‘Okay, readers don’t like that, what else can I do that’s fun with PoVs?’
A friend of mine was doing this with PoVs—having one Main Lady, and introducing other PoVs gradually one by one until she had an ensemble… I wanted to see if I could do it too. ;)
It’s interesting because it’s something that you can’t quite do in the same way with a standalone (you can have many PoVs in a standalone, but I think it makes the book work essentially differently)—just like ensemble casts with inner lives for everyone work better on TV than in the movies. And the plan was always to expand over the first two books from Kami’s PoV to have Jared’s and Holly’s and Angela’s and Ash’s as well (and then maybe Rusty’s and Jon’s and Lillian’s and even Alison Prescott’s. These are all things I considered).
Playing around with PoVs is tricky, as it’s expanding the world and saying that some of what readers knew before isn’t true. Adding female PoVs is also tricky. Here’s one trick I’ll confess: I did Ash’s PoV in Untold before I did Holly’s, even though Holly’s is just as important, because I’d noticed generally people tend to respond better to boy characters getting PoVs, as if girl characters are taking up space that should’ve rightfully belonged to the boys. So by doing Ash first I hoped to have people go ‘oh the world’s expanding, cool’ so then I could be all ‘And HOLLY! You already said it was okay! Tricked ya!’
(Note: Whenever I say stuff like this, I worry I am accusing my bewtifle readers. I truly am not. You guys are my precious beans, and I’ve been so happy to see the Lynburn Legacy girls generally embraced to your bosoms. But I always try to be 1000000% honest as far as I can go, and so I am talking about ‘how I imperfectly negotiate writing in a misogynistic world’ and also ‘writing tricks I have adopted in case people are interested in writing tricks for their own purposes!’)
Originally in Unspoken, I had Angela’s PoV when she beats up Rob, and also beforehand when she has a Come to Jesus (Or I’ll Cut You) talk with Ash (which now happens offpage but we see the result of it in Ash’s behaviour).
But my editor pointed out, justly, that introducing a new PoV that late into the first book was tricky, and so was splitting PoV from our heroine in what was basically part of the climactic battle scene.
That was one of those dark moments in a writer’s life when you know you have to do something, can’t figure out how to make it work, and you commend your soul to whatever god will take it and try anyway. Because it seemed like I was going to have to cut that scene. I really did not want to lose Angela’s triumph or even have Kami get some of it—Kami has triumphs of her own.
Female characters, gay characters, both have such a history of victimisation in media (and real life!). They’re shown in media to exist only as victims so often. It mattered a lot to me to have that scene, to put a gay female character in this scenario where the reader thinks she’s the victim—where it looks to the main character, even, like she’s the victim—but she’s not. She’s in control of the scene for every moment we see her, and she is SUPER ANGRY about the victimhood this dude intended for her, and she has every right to be. I was like, I’m keeping this scene, I need it, also I’m not toning her fury down.
That meant I spent days pulling my hair out by the roots going ‘But Kami has MAGic… she would help her friand… oh effity… okay, if I do a quick-buried-alive preview (works as foreshadowing!) and magic-knife her earlier maybe I can make this work…’
And I hope I did! Who can say, am I right? I am not the one who says whether I got stuff right—my readers decide that. ;)
Another effect of that rewrite was that it did mean the point where I felt I could start with Angela’s PoV—the point where I was really feeling her deep rage and contempt for the situation people were trying to put her in—was lost and I was never quite able to recapture it. I did try to write in Angela’s PoV several more times through Untold and Unmade and it never quite worked.
It wasn’t all misty ‘wasn’t feeeeeeling it’ of course. Part of the fun of Angela is her outward show—she is truly an insular introvert annoyed by most people and prolonged social interaction, natch, but her insides are more squishy than her outsides. And writing her gleams of tenderness often works better for me than laying out from the inside the softer feelings she has for Rusty, Holly and Kami—which we can tell she has anyway. ;) There isn’t as much to be conveyed that we don’t know as there was with Ash and Holly, because Kami knows Angela very well, and Holly’s PoV shows us a lot of what Kami doesn’t see.
Angela’s PoV ended up not working in the pivotal scenes for her in Untold for story reasons—e.g. the scene with Kami in Angela’s bedroom, the scene with Holly outside Rusty’s practise rooms. And for story reasons the scenes for her in Unmade (which scenes I cannot discuss obviously. ;)) worked better for me not-in-her-PoV as well.
Similarly, for story reasons and character reasons we don’t get Jared’s PoV in Untold until the very end, though we had it in Unspoken (because Jared worked better in Untold from a distance) and we don’t get Ash’s PoV in Unmade (because I can’t say again ;)).
It’s a shame though on a less-details-oriented level, because I did always mean to have her PoV, and if anyone else had one it would be her (anyone else getting one before her would be an abomination unto my soul). And I’ve enjoyed all the PoVs I did write. Holly and Jared’s PoVs in Unmade are some of my favourite things in Unmade.
One more thing about PoVs before I quit… Having multiple PoVs means anybody can die. And I think that’s beautiful!