Writers ask a lot of their readers. Actually, writers ask for a lot in general. There aren’t enough words to describe all of our needs and wants. Maybe that’s one of the reasons we’re so obsessed with language? Many of us scrambling to acquire, or improve our vocabularies. Some of us contemplate tense, punctuation, and form. All of us consider definition, context, and function.
Whether we write from the heart, the backbone, the gut, or the crotch — it’s all translated in the head, which means that even if we’re not focused on it, a sentient part of us selects each and every word for a specific reason; to be understood. Even when our writing is abstract, like a dream; absurd like a cartoon; or surreal like a hallucination, all of us are trying to communicate some aspect of ourselves, world, or existence.
Writers ask a lot. We ask our readers to willingly allow us entry into their minds and hearts. To be familiar with the terms we use, and accept the creative license we take.
We want them to give us their undivided attention, but we need them to offer it of their own volition.
We want their loyalty, but we need their respect.
We want their admiration and affection, but not at the cost of their individuality, or integrity.
We desire their praise, but we expect their sincerity.
We crave their support, but demand their honesty.
We ask to be loved, but from a safe distance. Leaving us plenty of space to collect our thoughts; enough quiet to hear our own voices. We want the room to stretch, but we need the freedom to shrink — towards or away from the world, beyond or into ourselves, and above our egos or down below our shadows.
Writers want readers to find their own meaning in the words, so that the sentences become something more than disposable text; they become eternal concepts and living feelings.
But writers need readers to see us, really see us, in each and every line. Because even when we tell outrageous lies, we expose our true selves — of which every character, literal letter or fictitious entity, is a fragment.
In a writer’s perfect world all of these wants are fulfilled, in tandem, with all of those tethered needs.
Writers ask a lot…
But in return, we answer only with the parts of ourselves, that we believe, worthy of being remembered forever.
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