A Crucial Collaboration: Reader-Writer-Character-Book | Poets & Writers
The relationship between reading and writing is a strong one and people who are generally good at one will usually be good at the other. THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN WRITERS AND READERS essaysPeople started to write as soon as they developed their written languages, because they . For current writers, the question of a relationship to the reader is a What is it but the problem of the writer "getting information across" to the.
That's where the problem of infodumping comes up. What is it but the problem of the writer "getting information across" to the reader? To make the story work, we have to decide what information is really critical for the reader to know. Kathleen Cheney noted in her post on description, sometimes stains on priest's hems or field-stripping of weapons appears to come into it. But why would we as authors want to give such tiny details if they're at such risk of appearing irrelevant?
To keep people oriented in the world, but not only that - it's to give the impression that we as writers are knowledgeable, and more importantly, reliable and authoritative reporters of the world in which the story takes place. The description of the weapon may seem pointless because it doesn't have sufficient relevance support in story conflict, character, etc.
Other information we give needs to keep the reader feeling like they're grounded and on their feet in the story world whatever world it happens to be and ready to run in whatever direction the hook pulls them, so they don't feel like they're getting dragged behind a galloping horse.
I struggle with this question constantly, given that I'm trying to create the impression of very alien worlds - but at the same time I have to keep readers able to follow the complexity of what I'm doing. Typically a reader won't object to information - and a critiquer might even ask for more information - if they feel that information helps them keep oriented in a fully fleshed world.
But it's a tricky borderline to walk, as you don't want people to feel you're treating them like they're stupid. I personally recommend that writers trust the reader as much as possible.
I ran across another way that an author speaks to a reader over this weekend, when I was thinking about Harry Potter which my husband has been reading with my kids. The way you choose to name your character is very important. In my science fiction, I try to keep my choice of names grounded in a language and world system, but also to give the names a flavor that will suggest their character. Bright and dark vowels are a part of this.
If you look at the wizards' names in Harry Potter, you'll realize that often, that's J. Rowling intentionally trying to share information with you as a reader. Take Professor Remus Lupin, for example.
It would be a staggering coincidence if that were truly his last name, and further, at his birth, his parents decided to give him such a lovely wolfly name. Far more likely is that Ms.relationship to reading and writing
Rowling is giving him the name for flavor, and to say to her readers something like, "Nudge nudge, here's a hint and if you can figure it out I'll be proud of you. Well, of course not.
A Crucial Collaboration: Reader-Writer-Character-Book
I've discussed unreliable narrators beforeand how a writer can go about separating the sensory impressions and judgments of an unreliable narrator from the total impression a reader gets. Writers can not only use tricks like inclusion of details from the setting that a character doesn't judge.
We can also include details that the character does notice, but which offer something else to the reader that the character doesn't pick up on. Every time you repeat a word, or a phrase, or an association of one object with a particular type of emotion, you begin to create a pattern often an unconscious pattern in a reader's mind.
Literary writers do this all the time, but so do writers of other genres, even without realizing it. The other thing you can do as a writer using internal point of view is choose when to switch from one point of view to another.
This will allow you to control not only what information the reader gets from which character at which time, but also to create a sense of confidentiality with the reader. The spot where a point of view switch occurs doesn't need to be at a moment of low intensity - a safe switch point. It can be at a moment of critical high intensity, a charged switch point, where it will serve the writer's intention. I love to start a situation, such as a scene when one character puts another under pressure, build up a strong sense of character 1's motives and hopefully a sense in the reader of how they want the scene to come out - and then switch points of view to the other character in the same interaction.
He loses his faith and then finds it again.
- Reading and Writing - the Relationship
- The Relationship Between Reader and Writer Essay
- The Relationship Between Reading and Writing
Eventually she finishes, and the book goes out into the world, where a reader finds it, picks it up, and reads: Well, if you give me a moment, I will tell you.
Character calls forth writer. Writer calls forth reader. It seems straightforward—but is it? What are the relationships between these players, the relationships embedded in every novel or work of fiction? Many people nonwriters imagine the novelist to be a lofty, godlike being who wields omniscient and absolute authority over his creations, manipulating characters like puppets and compelling them to enact his every whim, but nothing could be further from the truth.
Writers are at the mercy of their creations, as I suspect all gods, ultimately, must be. The character jumps on board and takes over the controls, and the writer—gratefully, abjectly, hopefully—hangs on for dear life. But of course this is an exaggeration, too, and the truth lies somewhere in the middle. While characters sometimes have a disturbing amount of agency, the author has authority too, upon which, for their dear lives, the characters rely.
Reading and Writing - the Relationship
The relationship between novelist and character is one of symbiosis and mutualism, and the book is the emergent field of their collaboration. The relationship between the reader and the writer is similar. Again, the writer is usually thought to be the one in control of the reading experience, seducing readers with story and holding them in his thrall, but the reality is more complex and reciprocal. This relationship is symbiotic, too, and the book is a cocreation.
As writers, we rely on our readers to finish our thoughts and our sentences. Every word I write can only be unlocked by the eye and mind of a reader. My scenes come to life because a reader is willing to animate them with his or her imagination and lived experience. Of course, logically, this means that every reader is reading a very different novel.
The Tale for the Time Being that Reader A reads is very different from the Tale for the Time Being that Reader Q reads, and anyone who has ever been in a book club knows this to be true. There are as many books as there are readers, and writers know this and are grateful—or at least we ought to be—that there are still people in the world who love the written word enough to spend their precious days reading our books rather than answering e-mail, surfing the web, or watching Game of Thrones.
All meaning is created through relationship, which means all meaning is relative. There is no one, single, definitive book. And because we are always changing, the words you read today mean something very different from those same words if read a month or a year from now. And while this is true for all written language, I think novels are special.