Friday, April 23, 2010

Making Connections

How do you get the reader to connect to your work? You make them feel involved. Sure, right, but how? One thing they must do is be involved in the story and one way you can get them involved is by not with-holding what is going on in the character. The character is constantly being affected by what is happening in each scene. He’s changing. OR he should be. If he’s not maybe something is wrong in your scene.

All these changes can be small ones that occur when he encounters something, well, small. He needs his new girlfriend to tell him why she’s been cold lately. They talk. She doesn’t tell him anything but that coldness increases, the room temperature drops another few degrees. So he finds out nothing directly but he is affected, he does change, and the reader should go through that with him.

I’m not saying inner dialogue here or tell us everything he’s thinking. The selection of detail still goes on obviously, but writer’s need to communicate their characters' little changes and these make the reader and characters closer and help create that connection every writer hopes for.

6 comments:

Indigo said...

Like this. Goes with the recent advice someone gave - Put your readers in your characters shoes. When the story takes a turn and the your character is caught off guard, scared, surprised...the reader will be too. (Hugs)Indigo

brian yansky said...

Yes. So hard to do. Maybe it's a little like acting. You have to be the character.

paulgreci said...

That connection is vital. I often ask myself how are my characters feeling? And how can I convey that so the reader doesn't just see it but also feel it.

I think I will add a "do not with-hold what is going on," mantra to my writing process. Thanks, Brian!

Deb Salisbury said...

Great post, with an excellent example. Thanks!

brian yansky said...

Thanks Paul and Deb.

Kathy Duval said...

Brian, I've been thinking a lot about this lately when I read others work. What is the magic on the page that makes me really care about what happens to the character? Sometimes I read stories that appear well written and don't fall in love with the book because I don't feel that connection. And sometimes I read books that aren't that well written, yet the connection is there. Best to have both, I know.