He Says, She Says

During our phone chat a few weeks ago (because we weren’t able to get together as hoped), my uncle told me that (based on what he’d read so far) he considered what I write nicely readable. That’s a good thing, though, he asserted. If it’s what I want, I should run with it.

But I thought how that could also be considered a “backhanded” compliment: that it is good enough to sell and attract readers, yeh, but it isn’t “deep.”

Recently I’d also noted a reader who’d written to me that she thought the books belonged in history classes. That is quite a compliment for fiction; but I wasn’t writing history, of course. (As flattering as that may be to hear, I don’t want to scare away potential readers here thinking they’re dry history. They’re not!) Yet “history” would seem pretty “deep” stuff, no?

You just can’t anticipate how individual readers will react to your writing. I also received another email from that same reader the other day. She added:

I can imagine the difficulty – not only remembering all the names but getting the sequence right continuously – the proof reading must have taken a lot of concentration too. I like the ending which makes one feel….

That’s what I want as well: to make one feel. All the variety of characters, complexity, and happenings should reasonably immerse and grab readers. If I’ve achieved that, I’m satisfied.

Free Stock Photo: A small cross and a bible in front of a stained glass window.
Free Stock Photo: A small cross and a bible in front of a stained glass window.

Well, enough thinking out loud: today’s work awaits. “James” is going to have a chat (I’m not revealing about what) with “Father Jim” – the same “James” who before meeting “Isabelle” had rarely set foot inside a church (and privately still isn’t sure he really believes in God), but “Isabelle” attends Mass (and she says she believes in God), so….

Have a good Monday. 😉

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Author: “Conventions: The Garden At Paris,” “Passports,” “Frontiers,” and “Distances.” British Airways frequent flier. Lover of the Catskill Mountains...and the 1700s. New novel of 1797-1805, "Tomorrow The Grace," due out in 2019.