Saturday, June 13, 2009

An example of how to do emotion in omniscient POV

Susan made a great point here in response to the example of the cloaked woman watching the carriage arrive:
I like omniscient; that's not the issue. I just want something to connect with emotionally, some sign of what I should be feeling. Anticipation? Fear? Excitement?

This is a reader preference thing, entirely. But I want the adjectives to set the mood more than I want the cold reporting of hair color and horses.

Susan, you're right-- maybe it would be good to subtly work in a tiny bit of emotion. What's she feeling when she sees that carriage? That can be done in omniscient by showing the emotion in her actions, like she "impatiently" or "hastily" or "hesitantly" wiped away the fog? Her anticipation or fear or anger would affect how she moves, and the more objective viewpoint would show the emotion in her movement-- not in her head, as we're not there, but in her movement. She's presumably alone, so she doesn't need to mask the emotion.

Good point! And you are right-- the emotion can be delicately inserted in the modifiers, the adjectives and adverbs around the main words.

I tend to overdo when I embed emotion, you know, the "mossy walls" and the "lowering sky" and the "threatening clouds" and the "frigid air." (Okay, already! We notice! Grim! Got it! Check!) But one or two precise modifiers can set the mood without changing the action or deepening the penetration.