Not long ago, I visited http://idlelore.com/2012/09/10/stories-need-to-mean-something/. While there, I read a paragraph that resonated with me.
“It isn’t about just saying something interesting, or telling a story, it’s about involving the reader in some way. Not necessarily breaking the fourth wall, but in just speaking of something in a way that is universal—an emotional reaction to a situation; a common, every day event that we’ve all experienced; something personal or intimate. But make it real, make it hit home.”
On this blog, I have often said my writing aspiration is humble: write simple stories that others will enjoy reading and buy.
Often, I spend hours writing, editing, re-writing on a story of less than 1,000 words. My husband marvels at the time I expend, scratching his head, wondering what takes so long. He doesn’t understand that I am distilling. I am struggling to find the right words to make it easy for my reader to “see” the environment or situation as the character sees it. I am crafting a connection, using words, between the reader and the character. I wrestle with how to hook the reader’s emotions so that the reader cares about what happens. Time will tell whether I am succeeding.
Likewise, if you are an aspiring author, then I urge you to give some thought to the premise of involving your reader in your tale. Ask yourself what techniques you use, what effort you make, to integrate your reader into your story.
It’s amazing how long we can spend searching for that one right word…
I take advice from you and others about minimizing words, dropping “then” and others. I keep paring it down — like haiku. Once I have refined that skill, then I will experiment with description–adding words artfully. It all takes time and practice, doesn’t it?
That it does…
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Such a sweetie to give this blog a mention. ❤ to you!
Thanks so much for the link! And I totally agree. There are hours agonising over the perfect word, the one that changes the whole sentence from just a string of words to the arrow that hits your heart.
🙂 Brilliantly said.
Great post, Fay! Sometimes it’s easy to forget that what we feel and see and experience in our own imagination isn’t necessarily going to be the same picture that our reader’s viewing. 🙂