To: Readers (From: Writers)

A reader of this blog made the comment that just as writing tethers the writer to other people, writing also tethers other people to the author. It works both ways. I’ve been thinking about this and decided to form my thoughts into two blogs: what writers give readers and what readers give writers. Today: what writers give to readers.

  • English: A Picture of a eBook Español: Foto de...
    English: A Picture of a eBook Español: Foto de eBook Беларуская: Фотаздымак электроннай кнігі Русский: Фотография электронной книги (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    Entertain: A writer entertains the reader. This is probably the most common reason for reading fiction: to be entertained. Entertainment is not all laughs – tears and fears make the happy times all the more meaningful.

  • Educate: A writer educates the reader. Yes, there may be facts about how the material world works but there are always facts (or opinions) about the workings of people and life. As an Aspergers person, I turned to books to learn what did not come intuitively to me.

  • Validate: A writer validates the reader. Readers are often drawn to writers who share similar world-views – who have similar thoughts about the way the world does (or should) work. Through this world-view, the writer can affirm the reader’s feelings about struggles, joys, and conflicts. The reader finds personal affirmation in the written page.

  • Feel: Definitely the writer gives a reader feelings. Every poem, book, lyric, and script is saturated in emotion. Having characters feel is not enough. The reader has a need to feel, too. And the source of feeling – just like in the real world – is in caring.

  • Challenge: A writer challenges the reader. Throughout a book, the writer poses a series of questions that the reader tries to answer. A writer may also pose dilemmas about society, love, and other aspects of life. Sometimes the writer provides an answer but other times the reader is challenged to reach the reader’s own conclusions.

  • Create: A writer gives the reader the power to create a world that belongs just to the reader. A world that exists only inside the page(s) of the work. Some readers go further and create fan fiction, using the characters and world that the writer introduces. And some readers go even further, inspired by other writers they create their own worlds and characters. Both types write for themselves and for a new generation of readers.

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