Who’s My Ideal Reader? #writestuff #amwriting

So, this Tuesday I once again participated in the wonderful writerly conversation that is the #writestuff hashtag.

I always find something that makes me feel like I learned something new, and this time, it was about asking myself the question, “Who is my ideal reader?” I thought this would be a hard question. But it turns out, it was pretty easy. My initial answer was that it was:

A person who’s trying 2 do good/doesn’t understand why society is the way it is/wants to change it/wants to not feel alone.

This was monumental! Before I had been thinking of Science Fiction and Fantasy readers like monoliths, and my ideas had been all over the place, and now I know why! If you don’t know who you’re writing to, you won’t know how to write it. Would you write an email to your mother in the same way you’d write one to your best friend? No.

That’s what I was doing when I was writing my many yet-to-be-edited first drafts. My themes, my characters, my settings, my plot lines – they were all different, but they were ultimately falling under the umbrellas of Science Fiction and Fantasy. It was a crowded mess. It was like fitting a crowd under a small overhang.

But now, I have a frame into which I can put my perfect-photogenic-plot line (which of course will arrive after many, many drafts).

I can see that my ideal reader is very vague. Someone who wants to make a difference in the world, and not be lonely while doing so. But, then again, that’s way more specific than what I had: a monolith. Maybe after many, many drafts of thinking about my ideal reader, that will become much clearer, just as my stories themselves will.

Who’s your ideal reader? Have you thought about it before? Let me know! 🙂

Mary Wright

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