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Can You Identify?

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Not sure where to put this, but this article really struck a chord for me as a writer and as a reader.

http://www.salon.com/2012/05/17/can_you_identify/singleton/

I think it has a good lesson for thinking as a writer and also tells us important, if unpleasant, realities about publishing.

#1 - May 19, 2012, 03:15 PM

jeffman

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A secondary character in my first novel is gay, and this fact is not revealed till the story is well underway. But I made the choice for artistic reasons. It's a period piece, and the character wanted to keep it a secret. There was also a hint of mystery. Readers knew he had a secret but not what it was.

I can't see myself withholding that kind of information to make a character more sympathetic. It seems manipulative.

Yet now that I find myself typing these words, I'm wondering if doing that would be any less manipulative than deliberately choosing characteristics (honesty, dignity, ability to play piano) that I hope my readers will admire.

I'll have to think some more.
#2 - May 19, 2012, 03:36 PM

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I'm all for manipulation ... isn't that what we do as writers? Manipulate emotions?
I say this because when I read, I find that the best books are ones that make me feel.

Vijaya
#3 - May 20, 2012, 09:24 AM
BOUND (Bodach Books, 2018)
TEN EASTER EGGS (Scholastic, 2015)
www.vijayabodach.blogspot.com
Author of over 60 books and 60 magazine pieces

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