Losing Grip On POV? Part Deux

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Shorewalker

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#1
OK, so here's the section in question. Our POV is Jenn and I'm just not convinced that I've retained a close enough grip on her.

Anything else I've screwed up...have at it!



Behind Jenn, the door had swung open, allowing a squall of wind and rain to blast into the kitchen. Turning, she saw a woman of quite ethereal beauty framed in the doorway, golden waves of hair cascading to her waist, large ice-blue eyes sparkling in the lantern light. Slightly shorter than Jenn and a few years older, her features were sculpted to exquisite perfection; high cheek bones, a small slightly turned-up nose, and full, pouting lips.

“It’s rude to stare, my dear,” the woman declared as she glided into the kitchen. She looked back over her shoulder as two liveried guards pushed into the room behind her. “Oh, yes, I’d forgotten about you two. Remember what I told you and your fellows? Go north at least ten leagues, find yourselves an inn and spend the night drinking to excess. Tomorrow morning, you will remember none of this.”

The woman smiled her dismissal and the guards saluted, turned neatly about and departed.

Jenn was at a loss. She had no idea who this woman was, what she was doing here and why she was accompanied by a noble’s guardsmen. All she knew was that she’d been interrupted. Her nails dug into her palms.

“Good evening, Enchantal,” sighed Pollar Reith. “The men are wearing Lord Veggel’s colours. I assume you…borrowed…them for the evening?”

“Indeed, Pollar.” The woman shooed one of the mercenaries from his stool at the table, handed him her cloak, and settled herself down. “I also liberated one of his carriages and a fine team of sturdy horses. The weather is simply dreadful!”

She sniffed the air. “Is that mulled wine? I’m certain it’s little better than muck, but on a cold night like this?” She smiled around the table. “If one of you would be so kind as to pour me a cup?”

Half-a-dozen men rose immediately, stools clattering to the stone floor in their hurry. Jenn thought they could not have moved faster if a fire had been lit beneath them. Beside her, Pollar Reith buried his head in his hands.

“Enchantal, stop!”

The woman pouted. “You never were any fun, Pollar. Such a serious young boy.” She turned her attention to Jenn. “And this delightful creature must be Lady Jennifer Anncy. Whatever have you done with your hair, dear?”

“I cut it off. It was unnecessary and a distraction.” Jenn held the woman’s gaze. “Distractions do not serve us well right now.”

For a moment, Enchantal was stone-faced. Then her full lips curled up into a smile. “I like you already, girl. There’s a bit of gumption about you”

Rising from her stool, she caught at her flowing black dress and affected a perfect curtsey. “Enchantal Gliss at your service, my lady. Gossip-monger, glamour-caster, pillow companion and assassin. I suspect you’re going to need all four before this tale is played out.”

Jenn relaxed a touch, memories of a conversation returning.

So this is the infamous Enchantal Gliss, the woman gifted with the powers of persuasion? I suppose that explains the guards.

Enchantal re-seated herself as one of the men handed her a cup. She sipped at the mulled wine. “Better than I thought possible. Now then, where were we? Ah, yes, Gradevale.”

Jenn had completely forgotten what she had been talking about. Fortunately, Gabriel Leinster had not, the man unfazed by Enchantal’s dramatic entrance.

“You think that Jenn was right regarding where we might find our answers?”

The woman picked at some specks of dirt on her sleeve. “Once I got word that parties of Vaan were abroad, I started some digging, calling in favours from the well-heeled and blue-blooded. Most of them around these parts have dirty little secrets and,” she slid Jenn a sly wink, “I somehow seem to be involved in most of them. They tend to fall over themselves to help when I ask.”

Enchantal’s expression grew serious. “This is what I have discovered. Since early summer, coin has been flowing into Alfern, Venn and Baltyr, and those are the kingdoms that I’m aware of. Agents have been offering ridiculous sums of money to minor nobles who are down on their luck for the use of parcels of land. These have usually been woodland, abandoned villages or mountainous terrain. No questions are to be asked, no word is to be spread and the locals are to be kept away from those areas. The coin has been so good that nobody has refused, and everybody has complied with the caveats…until I did the questioning, obviously.”

Handsome Blue arrived at the table with a bowl of stew and a spoon. In return, Enchantal Gliss offered him a glorious smile and grasped his hand warmly. The giant man blushed as the woman took a few mouthfuls of the food. Jenn expected some scathing comment, or a curled lip indicating deep distaste, but Enchantal simply smiled at Blue again and nodded approval.

Wearing the widest grin, Blue retreated as Enchantal dabbed at her lips with a silk handkerchief. “Although it has gone through a dozen sets of hands before arriving here…and many of those hands belong to public figures of some repute…I’ve managed to trace that coin back to Gradevale. I suspect that I’m the only one who has, given how tortuous the flow of funds has been.”

“Staging areas, perhaps?” mused Gabriel Leinster. “Not large enough to conceal an army and concern the lord or baron. I assume those areas are otherwise of little use?”

“Correct,” confirmed Enchantal. “Additionally, there are rumours that black ships have been spotted off the coast of Nemland, although Nemland is rather notorious for myths and legends. Still, you could lose an army in Nemland, and nobody would be any the wiser.”

The Third Hammer nodded. “So they cross the Grey Seas from Gradevale, disembark in Nemland and then spread out in small companies across the kingdoms.”

It all sounded logical, but Jenn knew the story still had holes. “But why would Thurcar aid the Vaan in this fashion?” She didn’t disbelieve it – she had seen first-hand what the king was capable of – but could not fathom the motivation. “Why would anybody share a bed with creatures whose sole intent is to wipe out humanity?”

Enchantal shrugged. “That I cannot tell you, but this whole affair centres on Gradevale, of that there can be no doubt.”
 
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#2
“You think that Jenn was right regarding where we might find our answers?”

The woman picked at some specks of dirt on her sleeve. “Once I got word that parties of Vaan were abroad, I started some digging, calling in favours from the well-heeled and blue-blooded. Most of them around these parts have dirty little secrets and,” she slid Jenn a sly wink, “I somehow seem to be involved in most of them. They tend to fall over themselves to help when I ask.”
How would the Enchantal have any idea which answers Jenn was discussing before she arrived?
 

Brian G Turner

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#4
IMO I think it reads quite fine - she's quiet but thoughtful, and isn't afraid to speak - so she is an active part of the scene, even though she's not driving it.

I actually did like the excerpt as well - there's a great sense of character coming through with this company of people, and some nice turns of phrase. :)
 
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#5
Because she's part of the mercenary company and had received word. It's simply the first time that Jenn meets her and Jenn is speaking as Enchantal comes through the door.
That might make sense to you, but reading what you posted it appears that Enchantal interrupts the middle of a conversation and is then asked a question about whether she agrees with something she couldn't possibly have heard. Whether Enchantal knows generally what's going on or not, there is no way she could know exactly what Jenn might be "right" about, so Gabriel asking Enchantal that reads like a humongous continuity error.

It reads like the author forgot who was or was not in the room a few minutes ago. And you won't have the opportunity to make you case with your readers like you are with me - it will just sound confused.

"I'll have the tuna," Jenn told the waiter.

Just then the doors flung wide and Enchantal walked in.

As she sat down at the table, Gabriel asked, "Do you agree with Jenn's order?"

"Yes, I adore sea food."

See the problem?
 

Toby Frost

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#6
In terms of losing grip on POV, I didn't have any issues with the excerpt at all. I'd bring Jenn into the conversation at the end, which seems to be what you've done. My main thought was that the description and entrance of the Enchantal were slightly overlong, but I'd expect that to get trimmed down in editing.

And I agree with Brian that it reads well and these are interesting people. As for continuity, I'd just assume that it was explained earlier in the story.
 
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Shorewalker

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#7
Cheers, people! :love:

OK, I am now officially mollified. So long as you're not feeling too distanced from Jenn, I'm good with that.

As for the continuity issue, I broke in halfway through a section, as that's where I thought I lost it a bit. The two lines that proceed this are...

"...they will be somewhere in the kingdom, my instincts tell me that the key to all of this is Thurcar.”

“Then your instincts aren’t leading you too far wrong, dear.”

Behind Jenn, the door had swung open...blah, blah, blah
 
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#8
I can't see anything amiss with the POV.
I do often lose track of who is speaking.
Since there is more than one woman in the scene it can be a bit confusing who the woman is and you may want to rethink that. Maybe swapping with the following paragraph so that the leading paragraph is not ambiguous. The following would suffer less to use the Woman rather than name the character; however naming the character speaking might be helpful in a scene like this.
As to this!
nchantal re-seated herself as one of the men handed her a cup. She sipped at the mulled wine. “Better than I thought possible. Now then, where were we? Ah, yes, Gradevale.”
I may have it wrong, however I get the feel that this character is the type that storms in as the focus and continues to try to keep focus and that she is already privy to the specifics of the meeting; though in truth there is really nothing in the scene to inform the reader just what they might have been talking about prior to her arrival. The Ah, yes, Gradevale. seems to be a prompting to steer the conversation into something she's already looked into.

I think the only caveat here might be that not having any notion of what was discussed prior to her arrive might lead to the reader scratching his/her hair trying to decide if it's really important.

I also get a sense maybe she was in the room and left and came back; though I'm not certain.
 

Plucky Novice

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#9
I didn't have any issue with POV but I did struggle to picture the scene and became a little disengaged. So far as I can tell there are potentially 13 or more people in the kitchen. Are they all sitting at the table?

It may be that we are familiar with the kitchen by this point in the story but placing the characters in the room would help me engage with the scene. I also struggled a little with who was talking, which may have exacerbated the issue. Again this may be less of an issue when you are more familiar with the characters.
 

Shorewalker

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#10
Thanks for the input.

I actually cut into the scene about halfway through, as that was the point where I thought I might have lost a bit of connection. Earlier in the same piece, the scene is set, we have a grip on the characters, what they're about, etc.
 

TheEndIsNigh

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#11
OK, so here's the section in question. Our POV is Jenn and I'm just not convinced that I've retained a close enough grip on her.

Anything else I've screwed up...have at it!

I can be picky - Forgive

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Behind Jenn, the door had swung open, (odd swung open but presumably it had been deliberately opened by the woman) allowing a squall of wind and rain to blast into the kitchen. Turning, she saw a woman of quite ethereal beauty framed in the doorway, golden waves of hair cascading to her waist, large ice-blue eyes sparkling in the lantern light. (eye colour by lantern light - sparkling maybe, colour not likely - The woman knows the colour of her own eyes but Jenn doesn't stand a chance - it sounds like a head hop) Slightly shorter than Jenn and a few years older, her features were sculpted to exquisite perfection; high cheek bones, a small slightly turned-up nose, and full, pouting lips. (again all by lantern light - I'm assuming this lantern isn't a WW2 AA searchlight)

“It’s rude to stare, my dear,” the woman declared (said - declare seems to shift the POV) as she glided into the kitchen. She looked back ( we've switched IMO) over her shoulder as two liveried guards pushed into the room behind her. “Oh, yes, I’d forgotten about you two. Remember what I told you and your fellows? Go north at least ten leagues, find yourselves an inn and spend the night drinking to excess. Tomorrow morning, you will remember none of this.”

The woman smiled her dismissal and the guards saluted, turned neatly about and departed.

Jenn was at a loss. She had no idea who this woman was, what she was doing here and why she was accompanied by a noble’s guardsmen. All she knew was that she’d been interrupted. Her nails dug into her palms. (Why? Plus it seems to give another POV to her nails - acting independently)

“Good evening, Enchantal,” sighed Pollar Reith. (Is this the first time we know he's here, because I got the impression Jenn was alone from the previous) “The men are wearing Lord Veggel’s colours. I assume you…borrowed…them for the evening?”

“Indeed, Pollar.” The woman shooed one of the mercenaries (weren't they just sent away) from his stool at the table, handed him her cloak, and settled herself down. “I also liberated one of his carriages and a fine team of sturdy horses. The weather is simply dreadful!”
(all that was definitely not Jenn)

Stopped here.

It seems there's a lot of head hopping going on.

Now I could follow what was going on, but if your intention is to have it all from Jenn's POV...

Hope I helped.

Tein

P.S. I could go through it all but you seemed worried about POV.
 

The Judge

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#12
I don't have time to do a full critique, but I've just read TEIN's post. (Hello, TEIN!! Long time no see!)

Hesitant as I am to contradict a venerable member, and in the hope this isn't seen as critiquing a critique which is a no-no, I do just have to put my oar in. I didn't notice any head-hopping when I read the whole extract quickly the other day, and I certainly can't see any in this piece TEIN has highlighted. It isn't head-hopping if you're merely reporting what someone else does, provided, of course, the POV character is able to see what is happening.

However, to my mind some of your word choices are perhaps not helping the issue and I wonder if this has contributed to your worry that the POV wasn't properly fixed eg I don't think the "declared" here means a change in POV, but in my view something like "announced" would be a better and clearer option; similarly I don't believe "She looked back" changes POV, but "She half-turned" would to me be more effective and less potentially ambiguous.

If you're worried about POV in other scenes and there's nothing substantially wrong, it might be worth tweaking odd words in this way -- little changes can have a surprisingly large impact.
 

Shorewalker

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#13
Thanks to both of you for your thoughts! :love:

Just a couple of points for clarity...the kitchen is full and we've just dropped into the scene at this point as it's where I thought things might have started to slip. Pollar (and a number of others) have already been active in this scene.

Secondly, the kitchen is well-lit. Yes, it's lantern light, but there are maybe two dozen of the little buggers in the room.

However, that does tend to give weight to The Judge's opinion, that choice of words is causing me to feel a little bit of disconnect. I'm going to go back to this and see if there are some obvious vocabulary changes that will bring me in closer.
 

crystal haven

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#14
Hi. Just to say, I didn't feel distanced from Jenn except for the the first opening line.

The door opens behind her which immediately put me in someone else's head. I suggest she should feel the squall, then she turns around to see the door is open. She can't see the door open if facing the other way, but can feel the wind, or the noise of the door, giving her reason to turn.
 

TheEndIsNigh

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#15
I think it's the use of "she" for both characters that's causing me trouble. I know it's all compartmentalised, but there's a point where I wonder which she, the text is referring to. Especially as they are both turning round etc.
If possible I'd keep it to "the woman" till we get a name to tag her by.

Regarding the eye colour - It's a personal nit pick of mine, but it's really difficult to see the colour of someone's eyes further than six feet away, across a room impossible. Well lit or not IMO and if they are "sparkling" as well!

I've just looked in a mirror in a reasonably well lit room and I can just make out the colour three feet away. Even though I know they are blue. My experience is, eyes don't sparkle with their colour.

If there's some magical reason for it, it should be mentioned early on, so the reader knows what s/he is dealing with.

Again -All only opinions.

Tein
 

TheEndIsNigh

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#17
I think the whole eye colour thing comes from the film industry.
An example is "A fistful of Dollars", where the stranger comes into town and stands at the end of the street facing the poor guys we all know will soon be dead. The camera zooms in on a close up of the faces we literally get a full cinema screen of a face where the colour of the characters eyes, an every other is laid bear before us.

The trouble is writers put this into the film script/direction and it's crept out into general fiction (IMO).

NP IMO = Not possible

The Sheriff sat, as he always did after a full breakfast and observed the stranger tying the horse to the rail across the street. One hundred and eighty pounds of trouble, the Sheriff thought and wondered just how fast the Stranger was with those pearl handled Colts strapped that were plainly visible in the holster. (NP) The Stranger turned and the Sheriff could see the grey nose hair(NP), the laughter lines(NP) and the emerald green eyes(NP) of the walking killing machine.

Pulling his own gun the, Sheriff shot the stranger where she stood. Nobody should wear that colour mascara (NP) with that skin tone, he thought, as he stood and walked toward the Undertaker's.
 

Jo Zebedee

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#19
I can be picky about character stuff, be warned. :)

OK, so here's the section in question. Our POV is Jenn and I'm just not convinced that I've retained a close enough grip on her.

Anything else I've screwed up...have at it!



Behind Jenn, the door had swung open, allowing a squall of wind and rain to blast into the kitchen. Turning, she saw You don't need this filter a woman of quite ethereal beauty can you tell me what that looks like rather than tell? How is ethereal any more than what you go onto to describe. If it isn't, I'd be inclined to get rid of the tell. framed in the doorway, golden waves of hair cascading to her waist, large ice-blue eyes sparkling in the lantern light. Slightly shorter than Jenn and a few years older, her features were sculpted to exquisite perfection; high cheek bones, a small slightly turned-up nose, and full, pouting lips.

“It’s rude to stare, my dear,” the woman declared as she glided into the kitchen. She looked back over her shoulder as two liveried guards pushed into the room behind her. “Oh, yes, I’d forgotten about you two. Remember what I told you and your fellows? Go north at least ten leagues, find yourselves an inn and spend the night drinking to excess. Tomorrow morning, you will remember none of this.”

The woman smiled her dismissal and the guards saluted, turned neatly about and departed.Why does she have to repeat instructions to them if they're happy to obey them? Is it so we readers know what her instructions are?

Jenn was at a loss. She had no idea who this woman was, what she was doing here and why she was accompanied by a noble’s guardsmen. All she knew was that she’d been interrupted. Her nails dug into her palms.

“Good evening, Enchantal,” sighed Pollar Reith. “The men are wearing Lord Veggel’s colours. I assume you…borrowed…them for the evening?”

“Indeed, Pollar.” The woman shooed one of the mercenaries from his stool at the table, handed him her cloak, and settled herself down. “I also liberated one of his carriages and a fine team of sturdy horses. The weather is simply dreadful!” You don't need to take a new paragraph here.

She sniffed the air. “Is that mulled wine? I’m certain it’s little better than muck, but on a cold night like this?” She smiled around the table. “If one of you would be so kind as to pour me a cup?”

Half-a-dozen men rose immediately, stools clattering to the stone floor in their hurry. Jenn thought they could not have moved faster if a fire had been lit beneath them. Beside her, Pollar Reith buried his head in his hands.

“Enchantal, stop!”

The woman pouted. “You never were any fun, Pollar. Such a serious young boy.” She turned her attention to Jenn. “And this delightful creature must be Lady Jennifer Anncy. Whatever have you done with your hair, dear?”

“I cut it off. It was unnecessary and a distraction.” Jenn held the woman’s gaze. “Distractions do not serve us well right now.”

For a moment, Enchantal was stone-faced. Then her full lips curled up into a smile. “I like you already, girl. There’s a bit of gumption about youfull stop. Although I think this line weakens the last line.

Rising from her stool, she I'm not 100 % sure which of these got up for a moment. caught at her flowing black dress and affected a perfect curtsey. “Enchantal Gliss at your service, my lady. Gossip-monger, glamour-caster, pillow companion and assassin. I suspect you’re going to need all four before this tale is played out.”

Jenn relaxed a touch, memories of a conversation returning.

So this is the infamous Enchantal Gliss, the woman gifted with the powers of persuasion? I suppose that explains the guards.A. I think she would have realised when the lady's name was first mentioned. B. I think we've already grasped the last points. Trust your reader.

Enchantal re-seated herself as one of the men handed her a cup. She sipped at the mulled wine. “Better than I thought possible. Now then, where were we? Ah, yes, Gradevale.”

Jenn had completely forgotten what she had been talking about. Fortunately, Gabriel Leinster had not, the man unfazed by Enchantal’s dramatic entrance.

“You think that Jenn was right regarding where we might find our answers?”

The woman picked at some specks of dirt on her sleeve. “Once I got word that parties of Vaan were abroad, I started some digging, calling in favours from the well-heeled and blue-blooded. Most of them around these parts have dirty little secrets and,” she slid Jenn a sly wink, “I somehow seem to be involved in most of them. They tend to fall over themselves to help when I ask.”

Enchantal’s expression grew serious. “This is what I have discovered. Since early summer, coin has been flowing into Alfern, Venn and Baltyr, and those are the kingdoms that I’m aware of. Agents have been offering ridiculous sums of money to minor nobles who are down on their luck for the use of parcels of land. These have usually been woodland, abandoned villages or mountainous terrain. No questions are to be asked, no word is to be spread and the locals are to be kept away from those areas. The coin has been so good that nobody has refused, and everybody has complied with the caveats…until I did the questioning, obviously.”

Handsome Blue arrived at the table with a bowl of stew and a spoon. In return, Enchantal Gliss offered him a glorious smile and grasped his hand warmly. The giant man blushed as the woman took a few mouthfuls of the food. Jenn expected some scathing comment, or a curled lip indicating deep distaste, but Enchantal simply smiled at Blue again and nodded approval.

Wearing the widest grin, Blue retreated as Enchantal dabbed at her lips with a silk handkerchief. “Although it has gone through a dozen sets of hands before arriving here…and many of those hands belong to public figures of some repute…I’ve managed to trace that coin back to Gradevale. I suspect that I’m the only one who has, given how tortuous the flow of funds has been.”

“Staging areas, perhaps?” mused Gabriel Leinster. “Not large enough to conceal an army and concern the lord or baron. I assume those areas are otherwise of little use?”

“Correct,” confirmed Enchantal. “Additionally, there are rumours that black ships have been spotted off the coast of Nemland, although Nemland is rather notorious for myths and legends. Still, you could lose an army in Nemland, and nobody would be any the wiser.”

The Third Hammer nodded. “So they cross the Grey Seas from Gradevale, disembark in Nemland and then spread out in small companies across the kingdoms.”

It all sounded logical, but Jenn knew the story still had holes. “But why would Thurcar aid the Vaan in this fashion?” She didn’t disbelieve it – she had seen first-hand what the king was capable of – but could not fathom the motivation. “Why would anybody share a bed with creatures whose sole intent is to wipe out humanity?”

Enchantal shrugged. “That I cannot tell you, but this whole affair centres on Gradevale, of that there can be no doubt.”
I don't find any significant issues with point of view. :)
 

Jay Greenstein

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#20
Well, you did ask... :LOL:

Behind Jenn, the door had swung open, allowing a squall of wind and rain to blast into the kitchen.
Several points: First, this is not her viewpoint because she lives in real-time, and this clearly is being explained by the narrator as something that happened in the past. In her viewpoint it is happening, and will be reacted to in some way, because noticing and reacting according to her personal perceptions is pretty much the definition of viewpoint. In fact, in her viewpoint, the wind will tell her that the door opened. So in her perception, a puff of rain dampened wind is what causes her to turn.

Next, you may be a bit over the top. If it "blasts in," because then, the room is filled with rain and wind. "Swirled around her," or "brought her head around, to see the door..." may be more what she perceives.
Turning, she saw a woman of quite ethereal beauty framed in the doorway, golden waves of hair cascading to her waist, large ice-blue eyes sparkling in the lantern light. Slightly shorter than Jenn and a few years older, her features were sculpted to exquisite perfection; high cheek bones, a small slightly turned-up nose, and full, pouting lips.
Here, you're reporting what can be seen, as-you-see-it. Only you can compare the two women's height, so the viewpoint, clearly, is that of the storyteller, not the protagonist. As a second demonstration of that, your protagonist does not react to her, does not speak. Instead, you, as the narrator, talk about the woman, move her, and then have her speak to Jenn and the men with her. But if this is to be Jenn's viewpoint, as against just having her as the person you talk about, we must know her reaction as she reacts. If she's to be our avatar, we must know how she views this.

Remember, how she perceives the woman will be far different from how an older or a younger man would, or how royalty would. She only be our avatar if we react as she does. And we can't do that unless you're in her viewpoint. POV refers to the personal pronouns you use when talking about her. But viewpoint is a very different thing.
Jenn was at a loss. She had no idea who this woman was, what she was doing here and why she was accompanied by a noble’s guardsmen. All she knew was that she’d been interrupted. Her nails dug into her palms.
This is a summation, an overview. But Jenn lives in real-time. And in this, Jenn isn't confused.This is you telling the reader she is, in the words of an external observer. Instead, let her demonstrate her confusion in some way. As Mark Twain observed, “Don't say the old lady screamed. Bring her on and let her scream.”
“Good evening, Enchantal,” sighed Pollar Reith.
Again, several points worth noting: First, try sighing that line and you'll see why that tag won't work. He can sigh, or say the words with a sigh. But he cannot laugh, sigh, etc. words.

Next, this isn't in Jenn's viewpoint. Again, you're reporting, because in Jenn's viewpoint, if she notices what's said and it's important enough to include (moves the plot, sets the scene, or develops character), she must react to them in some way, to maintain her viewpoint. Breaking away to report things she can hear but isn't reacting to is a POV break.

And you cannot have her notice and comment on things to make a dramatic point, or make the reader know things, because then, she's a plot device, not a living character, responding according to her imperatives. And readers will notice that in reality, it's you talking to them, not her reacting.

It's not a matter of good or bad writing, or talent, it's that you're thinking cinematically, and using the writing skills we all learn in school—skills which are meant to make us useful to employers. That's why we wrote so many reports and essays as against fiction. But those skills are fact-based and author-centric, and meant to inform clearly and concisely. For fiction we want to entertain the reader on every page. So the writring must be emotion-based and character centric—a style of writing not even mentioned in our school years because it's an approach unique to the profession of writing fiction.

The solution is simple enough, All we need do is pick up a few of the tricks of the trade, and the library's fiction writing section is filled with the views of publishing pros, teachers, and successful writers, all doing what they can to help you write like a pro. Ans as it so often is, my suggestion is to seek the names Dwight Swain, Jacck Bickham, or Debra Dixon on the cover. They're pure gold.

So a bit of time spent acquiring a few of the tricks the pros and the publishers take for granted would be wisely invested. Because, with their help you can trade the sturdy cart horse we're given in school for Pegasus. And mounted on a winged steed, who knows where you'll go?

Hang in there, and keep on writing.
 
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