Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Katy's Musing: Not My Story

If you've been out and about on the internet, you'll be aware that the ongoing tension between readers and authors over reviews has erupted into A Thing again. I'm not going to get into the particulars, because for my purposes today, they're not tremendously relevant. (If you really want to know, a good recap is here.)

What does matter is the insight that was sparked as I was thinking about the most recent explosion.
When someone reads my books, she (or he) is not reading the story I wrote.

Each of us brings experiences, biases and expectations to every book we read. Those experiences, biases and expectations fill in the white spaces in our reading, making every book a unique experience. As a writer, I have no control over that. If someone hates -- or loves my book -- it's as much about what she brought to it as what she found in it.

And that's okay. In fact, it's kind of awesome. All I can do is write a story that pleases me. If my taste aligns with a reader's, great; if not, so be it.