I want to write a scene from multiple peoples perspectives without making it incredibly long, or repetitive. Is there a correct way to go about this?
4Why do you want to write it from multiple people's perspective? This is important, because any technique you use depends on the effect you are trying to create for the reader.– user16226Aug 10, 2017 at 11:59
I've red a book where a battle scene was written out multiple times, from start to finish, each time from someone else's perspective. Another way to do it is to have breaks in the writing, and to switch point of view often while maintainins a focus on the group as a whole.– AricAug 10, 2017 at 12:16
I wanted to write it from multiple peoples perspectives to point out how the same event can affect different people, completely differently. Such as one may have a positive view on things, while another takes it negatively, etc.– ButterflyAug 11, 2017 at 3:10
Writing (exposition) is subjective. There is no correct way to achieve your effect. I have used multiple perspectives several times.
Effectively you are playing with time so you will require one or more anchors.
The simplest anchor is an active anchor. An active anchor is an ongoing event: a speech, a thunderstorm, etc . . .
My character is running in the Olympic 400m relay final. Her grandfather is in his hospital bed, watching the event on TV. Her boyfriend is in a taxi, listening to the event on the radio. Her brother is watching the event on his phone. That's four POVs. I can switch between them at will.
The static anchor is more complicated because you have to play with time.
I have three anchors: (1) a church bell rings. (2) A gunshot rings out. (3) Another gunshot is heard.
A family are having dinner. The church bell rings (signifying 12.00) The father leaves the table because 'the game' has started on TV. The aunt is shot.
A sniper is watching a family eat. He has his target in the cross-hairs. The church bell rings. He squeezes the trigger.
A woman is boarding the 12.00 train. The church bell rings. She hears the faint sound of a gun-shot. She smiles. "Job done."
I usually cheat, by having the second or third character look back from a period in the future. For instance if I am describing a car wreck, I might write: Bob was driving his car through the intersection when suddenly a truck appeared out of nowhere and crashed into his door. Then I would later describe the passenger waking up in the hospital and have him try to remember how he got there. Then realizing the last thing he remembered was, noticing that bob wasn't stopping for a red light.
One of the best ways I have seen this done is have the scene play out normally, and then when you come to an end point where you can pause and switch views, go back from a different angle and repeat until you have all the view points covered. Then usually it is blended nicely back together to the original perspective to continue on from that time point. Honestly I wish you the best as this will be really tricky to do and pull off as it can easily become confusing and intertwined poorly. It's also a lot harder to do this in writing than it is in cinema. There are a lot of smart people here to help :)