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Unseemly Head-Hopping

awnlee jawking

Voracious omnivores will know I have a story in progress which indulges in overt head-hopping, something of an experiment for me. I know some of you fellow authors have tried it so I'd like your counsel.

The POV character obviously can't know for sure what the others are thinking and my story keeps the characters off-balance a lot, leading to my overusing the verb 'seem'.

Did you encounter such a problem? If so, how did you circumvent it? Did you scour the thesauruses for synonyms of 'seem' or did you adopt another approach? I'd appreciate examples from your own work so I can get a feel for whether the same technique could be applied to my story.

Thanks,

AJ

Crumbly Writer

I just had a discussion about this over on LinkedIn, where an author admitted to head-hopping, but said "it was necessary" since she was showing what the protagonist's parents were saying about him in Italian, which he didn't understand. I argued, a better, clearer and easier to understand approach (in her case, at least) would be to a section break, followed by a separate scene with the parents, in another room, talking ABOUT the son in private. That way, it's clear he's being talked about, you don't have the head-hopping which pulls readers out of the story, and you can devote the one section to the son and the other to the parents.

I think you may be facing something similar. Rather than try to reveal what's in each person's head at the moment (almost the definition of head-hopping), you may want to shift the insight to a separate segment which focuses on the people in question instead of jumping from one person's thought to anothers.

The problem, other than not keeping to form, is that readers want to relate to a specific character. It's OK to switch from one character to another (in different chapters or sections), but it's disjointing to them to yank them out of one character they're currently relating to, into someone else they're not.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer

you may want to shift the insight to a separate segment which focuses on the people in question instead of jumping from one person's thought to anothers.


That's what I'm doing. I consider that head-hopping.

Two authors I consider to do a good job using the technique are Oyster50 and StangStar06 (I really like his latest, Twinsanity), but they write stories with a different feel, not constantly keeping their characters off-balance.

AJ

Replies:   REP
REP

@awnlee jawking


That's what I'm doing. I consider that head-hopping.


From CW's description of the other writer's story, it sounds like the MC was the narrator and told using the First Person POV. Then in CW's suggestion of a scene with just the parents, the writer could switch the narrator to one of the parents and use First Person. Alternatively, the new scene could use Third Person, and include head-hopping.

Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

Can you give an example where you use "seem"

Switch Blayde
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


The POV character obviously can't know for sure what the others are thinking


Keep in mind, your reader doesn't often need to know what every character is thinking in a scene. That's one danger of omniscient — to give the reader too much information. You, the author, knows what they're thinking which determines what they say and how they act, but the reader is living the scene through the POV character.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Ross at Play
Updated:

@REP

Whoops. I intended this to be @awnleejawking - not @REP

I will risk showing my inexperience and getting my head bitten off here. I do like your writing - and the thing I like most about it is your willingness to experiment.

IMHO your conclusion from the experiment with this particular story should be: I won't try that again.

I found the POV shifts very distracting. I think the story would have been much better if told in 3POV.

That raises the question of how to show thoughts of different characters.

My suggestion for your next experiment is to say, "To Hell with all the POV Nazis telling me whose heads I'm not allowed to see into: I'm going to write a story from the POV of an all-seeing, all-hearing God!

Replies:   awnlee_jawking
Crumbly Writer

@REP

From CW's description of the other writer's story, it sounds like the MC was the narrator and told using the First Person POV. Then in CW's suggestion of a scene with just the parents, the writer could switch the narrator to one of the parents and use First Person. Alternatively, the new scene could use Third Person, and include head-hopping.

The idea was to avoid head-hopping altogether, whether using 1st or 3rd person, instead featuring a single POV in each chapter/section focusing on a separate character.

The problem occurs when you try to interject too much information at one time, rather than allowing it to come out in it's own time.

Replies:   REP
awnlee_jawking

@Ross at Play

IMHO your conclusion from the experiment with this particular story should be: I won't try that again.


Thank you. I hope you gave the story an appropriate score for your distaste.

I found the POV shifts very distracting. I think the story would have been much better if told in 3POV.


I was expecting that to be the majority view, but the balance of feedback e-mails has been very positive.

One lesson from the experiment is that it produces more rounded characters. Some very highly rated SOL stories have one-dimensional characters which leave you scratching your head at why they would behave in the way that they do. With head-hopping, you're pretty much obliged to come up with convincing motivations.

AJ

Ernest Bywater

@awnlee jawking

The real question I see here is: Why do you use 'seem' so much?

I've not done much head-hopping, but have done so in a couple of stories with Rough Diamond being the biggest example. In those cases I simple presented the scenes from the POV of the current 'head' and kept track of the what the different 'heads' actually knew. If someone had to have concerns about what another said or did, then a thought along the lines of 'I wonder if he means that, is the easiest way to handle it.

awnlee jawking

@Ernest Bywater

a thought along the lines of 'I wonder if he means that, is the easiest way to handle it


Interesting. Thank you. I'll see whether that sort of approach would work in my story.

AJ

Replies:   REP
REP

@Crumbly Writer

I agree head-hopping is not a good thing. However, if you go back and reread AJ's comment, it sounds like he is trying to experiment with head hopping. That is why I mention it could be used in 3rd preson.

REP

@awnlee jawking

First Person head hopping can easily be changed to what the narrator knows by indicating that the narrator is thinking about what another character might be thinking (e.g., I wonder, think, believe, etc., that X might be thinking ....)

awnlee jawking

@Ernest Bywater

Following a recommendation, I've started reading 'Death by Fucking' by Andrew Wiggin, winner of umpteen awards and with a SOL score of 9.14. He used the same format, changing the POV every chapter. Although the style of the story is much different, whenever the current POV-holder has uncertainties, Andrew uses 'wonder' rather than 'seem'.

According to professionals, using 'seem' is a symptom that the style of writing might be too passive. And it's true that if I nuke their occurrences in my story, it comes across as stronger. But it also raises questions about how the POV-holder actually knows, and it changes the atmosphere.

AJ

awnlee jawking

@awnlee_jawking

I was expecting that to be the majority view, but the balance of feedback e-mails has been very positive.


I should add that the opinion of a handful of e-mailers is not necessarily representative of the readership as a whole. If a few readers sent approbative comments but the story score tanked, you should probably take them with a huge pinch of salt. But since I've made the head-hopping "in your face", the score has been slowly creeping up.

AJ

Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

He used the same format, changing the POV every chapter.


That's not head-hopping.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Ernest Bywater

@awnlee jawking

According to professionals, using 'seem' is a symptom that the style of writing might be too passive. And it's true that if I nuke their occurrences in my story, it comes across as stronger. But it also raises questions about how the POV-holder actually knows, and it changes the atmosphere.


that seems like a good idea.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

I think it is. In one chapter, the author details what's in one protagonist's head. In the next chapter, the author details what's in the other protagonist's head.

AJ

Replies:   Switch Blayde
awnlee jawking

@Ernest Bywater

that seems like a good idea.


:)

AJ

Switch Blayde
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


I think it is. In one chapter, the author details what's in one protagonist's head. In the next chapter, the author details what's in the other protagonist's head.


It's head-hopping when the author jumps from one character's head to another WITHIN a scene. It's okay to change POV characters at a new chapter. In fact, when the story is written from multiple characters' POVs, that's how you do it.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

It's head-hopping when the author jumps from one character's head to another WITHIN a scene.


According to the definition you prefer, if the POV switches between characters within a scene, it's head-hopping. 'Scene' seems to be the most popular unit for authorities to choose for their definition. Others choose paragraph, chapter etc.

I consider that if the author switches POV whatever the unit, it's head-hopping. Picking an arbitrary unit size for the switching has no logical basis as far as I can see - it's either happening or it isn't.

AJ

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

The reason it's a scene is because a scene is told from the POV character's perspective. Usually there's one scene per chapter, but there could be more. Dan Brown in "The Da Vinci Code" has multiple scenes within a chapter, switching POVs with each scene. But within a scene you are only in one character's head.

This is a really good article. It's purpose is to show the difference between omniscient and limited, but it explains head-hopping well.

http://thewritepractice.com/head-hopping-and-hemingway/

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

Perhaps you'd prefer a different term to describe what I'm doing. I'm changing the POV from chapter to chapter but they're very short chapters.

I hope Ross doesn't mind me quoting him but

I found the POV shifts very distracting.

which is exactly the reason why experts tell writers not to head-hop. So the difference between what I'm doing and what you consider to be head-hopping is in degree, not principle.

AJ

Replies:   REP  Switch Blayde
REP

@awnlee jawking

I'm changing the POV from chapter to chapter but they're very short chapters.


The real question is when you do change the POV to a different character are you providing enough information that your readers know the narration has switched to a different character in a timely manner (i.e., within the first 1-2 paragraphs).

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

I found the POV shifts very distracting.


I'll use "The Da Vinci Code" again. It has a lot of short scenes within each chapter, each from a different character's POV. My guess is that's the reason for the scenes (to switch POV character without head-hopping).

Maybe you changed POV characters too frequently. Maybe you didn't make it clear to the reader who the POV character was. Or maybe Ross simply doesn't like switching POVs.

Most 3rd-limited books are told from more than one character's POV. However, most don't switch POV character at every chapter. And most aren't even a 50-50 split (usually the majority of the story is from one character's POV).

So changing POV character at a new chapter is not head-hopping. Head-hopping is when the reader is in one character and all of a sudden you end up in another character's head. That's jarring to the reader. And then you're back in the 1st-character.

With today's genre fiction, readers like to be immersed in a character. I think that's why omniscient isn't popular today. Now if you do it right, you can leave that character at a new chapter and then the reader sees the world through the eyes of the new POV character. It's when you jump back and forth that it's annoying.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@REP

Possibly not, although I name the POV character in each chapter heading. I nicked the idea from another SOL author because IMO it worked well.

AJ

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

So changing POV character at a new chapter is not head-hopping.


We'll have to disagree on that. It waddles like head-hopping and it quacks like head-hopping and that's close enough for me.

AJ

Replies:   Not_a_ID  Switch Blayde
Ernest Bywater

@awnlee jawking

Possibly not, although I name the POV character in each chapter heading.


I found that worked well for Rough Diamond and I made it clear by including the name of the new head in the chapter title - making the change of head clear was very important because it was written in the first person, and people could be confused if they thought it was still the previous character. Mind you, over 80% of the story stayed with the MC - but it would work regardless of how many times you jumped characters.

Not_a_ID

@Switch Blayde

Keep in mind, your reader doesn't often need to know what every character is thinking in a scene. That's one danger of omniscient — to give the reader too much information. You, the author, knows what they're thinking which determines what they say and how they act, but the reader is living the scene through the POV character.


This is something I'm kind of doing a mental battle on in regards to a story mock-up running around in my head. I'd prefer to do a MC first person narrative, but at the same time, I'm dealing with story/plot elements that are going to basically bushwhack the MC in multiple ways, seemingly from nowhere.

But as the particular event chain in question doesn't need the reader to likewise be surprised. Giving them strong foreshadowing/forewarning of what's coming isn't considered harmful in my view, and probably beneficial. But it means opening up the narrative by doing a fair bit of "head hopping" before settling in to the 1st person MC narrative.

Not_a_ID

@awnlee_jawking

The real question I see here is: Why do you use 'seem' so much?


I'd go with this question. Also many if not most people don't tend to view things "conditionally" so they're unlikely to "seem" to perceive things a particular way.

The way they heard, saw, or interpreted things is the way it happened. End of story. Of course, that also starts the journey into unreliable narrators within a story and how that may or may not actually be the author simply screwing up rather than deliberately doing so.

Not_a_ID
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


We'll have to disagree on that. It waddles like head-hopping and it quacks like head-hopping and that's close enough for me.


It comes in many flavors. ;)

The "head hop" at scene/chapter change isn't unusual, and actually somewhat common. Another common form is one perspective as a chapter lead-in, and then continuing the first person MC narrative from there.

But when most "head hopping" is discussed, it is over perspective shifts within a single scene. Almost like the author was playing hop-scotch or some other game with the characters heads. Which is probably where the practice received its name.

Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

We'll have to disagree on that. It waddles like head-hopping and it quacks like head-hopping and that's close enough for me.


Changing POV is not the same as head-hopping. Head-hopping is a negative term, meaning you did something wrong. I Googled "definition of head-hopping" and found many articles. I chose one that was from Writers World rather than an individual author giving their opinion. This is their definition:

Headhopping refers to writing where the point of view whips back and forth between multiple characters within a scene.

Headhopping is not to be confused with multiple viewpoints. Multiple viewpoints are expected in today's romance novels. Most romance novels today show scenes from the viewpoints of both the hero and heroine. However, you should avoid switching that viewpoint in the middle of a scene.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

As I said, I'm not convinced.

Head-hopping is not the same as multiple viewpoints, it's multiple viewpoints within . They chose 'scene' as their arbitrary unit and, to be fair, that's what the majority of authorities use.

AJ

Replies:   REP
REP

@awnlee jawking

As I said, I'm not convinced.


For the moment, forget about when to change viewpoints.

To me the key factor in First Person head hopping is that the narrator has not changed.

For example: Tom, the narrator, is telling you the reader about the story. Suddenly, Ton hops into Bill's head taking you the reader with him so he can show you what Bill is thinking or believes. Then Tom returns to his head bring you the reader with him.

That is First Person head hopping. Changing narrators it total different.

richardshagrin

@awnlee jawking

Unseemly Head-Hopping

If you use "seem" a lot (my overusing the verb 'seem')
wouldn't that be Seemly Head-Hopping?

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@richardshagrin

Seemly Head-Hopping?


Seamless head-hopping might provide a better reading experience ;)

AJ

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Not_a_ID

@awnlee jawking

Seamless head-hopping might provide a better reading experience ;)


Is that where they do it naked to avoid having any seams?

awnlee jawking

@awnlee_jawking

One lesson from the experiment is that it produces more rounded characters.


I've received reader feedback rooting for the antagonist.

Either that's a reflection on the multi-dimensionality of the characterisation (due in part to the head-hopping?), or the characterisation is so crap the readers can't tell good guys from bad guys :)

AJ

Replies:   REP
REP

@awnlee jawking

Perhaps in real life your readers are bad guys who don't want a good guy to win. :)

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Switch Blayde

For what it's worth, I happened to click on a story on SOL's front page. It's called "Incestuous Harem."

The story is written in 1st-person, but from more than one character's POV. I only read part of Chapter 1, but the author names the character and then tells the story from that character's 1st-person POV. Then names another character and it jumps to that character's 1st-person POV.

Not technically head-hopping, but I stopped reading. It was like jumping from one character's head to another.

Replies:   Ross at Play
awnlee jawking

@REP

That touches on another subject I've been wondering about but probably deserves an Author Hangout thread of its own - the ethics of dissing your readership. I try hard to treat my readers courteously and that way I think I've defused a couple of potential rows. But not all SOL authors seem to feel the same way.

AJ

Replies:   REP
Ross at Play

@Switch Blayde

Not technically head-hopping, but I stopped reading. It was like jumping from one character's head to another.

I've seen similar things done to great effect (but one chapter per character), and at other times hated it.
I do not think the technique is a problem, per se, I think the problems stem from why the author chose to do it.
***
I will be a DEVIL'S ADVOCATE here. I think there exists an orthodoxy of views here that is misleading, if not totally wrong. I'm sure I'm not alone in thinking that, or at least in having doubts.
Hoping to prompt a debate, I will play the heretic, and express views I do not necessarily (totally) agree with. Not knowing how to explain these things rationally, I will be using over-the-top offensive language.
***
I think many of you here are a bunch of POV-Nazis.
You're all so bloody adamant that 'authors must have artistic freedom to break any "rule"' when it comes to punctuation and grammar.
But NOT when it comes to the restrictions that apply to whose thoughts may be shown when using various POVs. You constantly bleat those rules must never be broken. [May Tolkein forgive me,] you think this is The Rule that rules over all other rules.
***
It seems to stem from the doctrine that 'readers identify more with characters when 1-POV is used.' This is COMPLETE NONSENSE. Readers identify just as much with well-crafted characters when 3-POV used, and there is centuries of evidence proving that is so.
***
There are valid reasons for choosing 1-POV, the main one being to control when and how information becomes available to the reader. When 1-POV is used readers understand they will not know information until the MC learns it.
***
'Head-hopping' is NOT a mortal sin, but it does have it's dangers.
There is no inherent reason why thoughts of ANY characters should not be shown, and not just their actions and words.
The main danger is showing too much information. But the solution is not some arbitrary restrictions on whose thoughts may be shown, for example never showing the thoughts of two different characters in one scene.
A reasonable solution is to advise authors to be very cautious of showing thoughts by ALL characters at ALL times.
I think more appropriate advice is before showing any thoughts, authors should ask themselves: (a) Is it essential readers know this? Now?, and (b) Is there a reason other characters should not know this? If they have no satisfactory answers to those questions my guess is showing the thought would usually be "telling", and authors should consider how (and whether) to show the idea instead.
***
... removing my forked tongue from cheek now ...
***
My sincere advice to newer authors is never choose 1-POV without a clear plan for the ending of the story, and then assessing that 1-POV will work. If you do that, you may find 1-POV imposing obstacles to showing where the plot leads you that would not exist if you'd written the story in 3-POV.

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

Although I've never regarded changing point of view as wrong, per se, I do very strongly suggest you consider if it's really necessary for the delivery of the story.

The few times I've used a change of point of view were where I started the story in the first person and needed to show something important the main character wasn't to know about until much later. To manage this I started a new chapter with a clear marker the character and point of view had changed, and then presented the scene from the point of view of the new character. When the chapter ended I went back to the main character in the next chapter.

I've since then learned it's easier, and often (but not always) better, to use the third person point of view so the narrator has access to the actions and thoughts of all the characters when they need to. This simplifies scenes away from the main character.

Having said the above, I sill heavily stress you need to choose the point of view and presentation method you think will best present your story, because they're all valid options.

typo edit

Replies:   Ross at Play
REP

@awnlee jawking

If my attempt at humor offended you, I apologize.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Ross at Play

@Ernest Bywater

I sill heavily stress you need to choose the point of view and presentation method you think will best present your story, because they're all valid options.

Agreed.
Would you agree third person is the safe option for someone who hasn't figured out yet where their story will end?

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Switch Blayde

@Ross at Play

I do not think the technique is a problem, per se, I think the problems stem from why the author chose to do it.


The problem was it was 1st-person. In one section "I" was Character-A and then all of a sudden "I" was Character-B — and, btw, with the same voice.

Switch Blayde

@Ross at Play

There is no inherent reason why thoughts of ANY characters should not be shown, and not just their actions and words.


Then write it in omniscient. It's that simple.

When you write in first-person or 3rd-limited, you tell the story through the POV character. The reader is living the story through that character. With the reader engrossed in that character, it's jarring to all of a sudden hear another character's thoughts.

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@Ross at Play


Would you agree third person is the safe option for someone who hasn't figured out yet where their story will end?


Actually, if they don't yet have a rough idea of where the story will end, they have major issues until they do. However, if they don't have a reasonable idea of the general path and do have an end concept - then third person gives them a lot more scope for moving about later than first person does.

When i first think of an idea for a story I don't always have an end in sight, but I always have an end in sight before I start to write it out - simply because I need a target to aim at. Having said that, I will often change roads along the way to stop at scenic places. Thus before I write I have a start, a concept, and an end clearly set out in my mind, but may still be working on the areas in between while writing.

edit to add: In the various references on writing I've seen what Switch Blayde calls omniscient also called third person. I've never found a clear definition of one that doesn't include the other or totally excludes the other.

There are various levels you can write in the third person - usually defined as limited or unlimited - I leave it as third person.

In short, first person is seeing through the eyes of the character whose point of view is being used.

Second person I've never really understood what they mean by it and keep away from it.

Third person is another person watching the other. This can be done from any level and any position - either looking down or standing beside the events.

The main differences between first and third are how much the narrator can disclose about events away from the point of view of the character and the pronouns used.

Switch Blayde

@Ernest Bywater

edit to add: In the various references on writing I've seen what Switch Blayde calls omniscient also called third person. I've never found a clear definition of one that doesn't include the other or totally excludes the other.


3rd-person does not equate to omniscient.

You can have omniscient in 1st-person. "The Book Thief" has an omniscient narrator (Death).

In omniscient, an all-knowing narrator is telling the story. The narrator isn't typically in the story so it's written in 3rd-person. When the omniscient narrator is in the story, like Death is in "The Book Thief," it's written in 1st-person.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Switch Blayde


3rd-person does not equate to omniscient.


Switch, from what you say about Death it's a first person narrative because the narrator is in the story. It's just a lot of what they tell is about another person.

The best simple explanation I've found is the current wikipedia one, and it show omniscient as one of the 3rd person variants - not a different view.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narration

Switch Blayde

@Ernest Bywater

from what you say about Death it's a first person narrative because the narrator is in the story


No, it's omniscient because the omniscient narrator can tell you what every character is thinking, but you can't hear any character's thoughts directly.

Death isn't really a character in the story. I said that because it's 1st-person so it seems like a character. Until someone pointed that out to me I never heard of 1st-person omniscient.

Switch Blayde
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narration


The important part of this article as it relates to what we're talking about is:


The second axis is the omniscient/limited axis, a distinction that refers to the knowledge available to the narrator. A third person omniscient narrator has knowledge of all times, people, places, and events, including all characters' thoughts; a limited narrator, in contrast, may know absolutely everything about a single character and every piece of knowledge in that character's mind, but the narrator's knowledge is "limited" to that character—that is, the narrator cannot describe things unknown to the focal character.


EDT: Keep in mind, when it says "a limited narrator" it's implying 3rd-limited since this is in the section called 3rd-Person.

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Switch Blayde
Updated:

@Switch Blayde

And then there's 3rd-limited vs. close-3rd-limited (or something like that).

John is the POV character for the scene.

"John saw the door swing open." That's 3rd-limited because the POV character saw the door open. (It would also be how it's written in omniscient.)

"The door swung open." That's close-3rd-limited because you're living the scene through the POV character so the reader sees what John sees. You don't have to tell the reader that John saw the door open. How do we know the door opened? The POV character saw it open.

Ross at Play

@Ernest Bywater

Actually, if they don't yet have a rough idea of where the story will end, they have major issues until they do.

Yes, BUT ... we should encourage those just starting out that if the alternative is not writing at all, then they should go ahead and write something that you know will end up with major issues.

However, if they don't have a reasonable idea of the general path and do have an end concept - then third person gives them a lot more scope for moving about later than first person does.

THANKS for supporting that.
I've come across several very new writers who have chosen first person because they have seen or heard that readers will identify more closely with the character.
If that is true at all the difference is only marginal. Readers do 'identify with' well portrayed characters written in the third person.
***
My conclusion is if a new author thinks their story could be written in the first person, but is not sure, they should start in third person limited (but not close-limited). Then if they find they need scenes where the MC is not present they can drift into omniscient almost seamlessly.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Ross at Play

Yes, BUT ... we should encourage those just starting out that if the alternative is not writing at all, then they should go ahead and write something that you know will end up with major issues.


True, that's what many people call writing a plot idea or story starter. I've a few old ones of those lying around from the old days, awaiting finishing.

awnlee jawking

@REP

Apologies, that didn't come across at all well.

I had no problem with your humour (and it was rather funny). But it struck me as rather ironic that I could neither agree nor disagree without casting some sort of aspersion on the readers concerned.

Should I ever make the step up to dead-tree books, those readers might be candidates for purchasers :)

AJ

Replies:   REP
REP

@awnlee jawking

Apologies


All's good then.

Sometimes it is necessary to "diss" a reader. I recall one in particular who dumped on me regarding my labeling the energy fields joining universes in my Opening Earth story the Fourth Dimension. He said I was wrong for Time was the fourth dimension, and then got downright personal and insulting in his comments. At least it seemed so to me, so I unloaded on him and then told him he was more than welcome to not read my stories if he didn't like my scenarios. That was the last I heard from him.

Now I have a couple of readers who are telling me how I should structure future Parts and Chapters. Their ideas are not bad, but they don't fit my thoughts on how the story should be structured; so I just thank them for their input.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@REP

so I just thank them for their input.


That's never a bad option. If they really don't like your ignoring their 'advice', they can always write their own stories to show how it 'should' be done.

AJ

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