The Intimate Conversation Between Writer and Reader

by janbking on April 11, 2007

A good book is like an intimate conversation between two people – the writer and the reader. You know as a reader when you are entirely engrossed in a book and you are startled when someone comes into the room and calls your name. That book had transported you out of the physical place you were in, into a different dimension.

So what can a writer do to tranform the reader to that new place of heightened awareness of not the physical surroundings, but the readers own thoughts and possibilities? Is it raw talent alone that allows for that amazing connection with the writer’s readers, or is it something that can be learned and developed?

Both, probably. There are few among us who will write effortlessly, but just as there are few who will play the violin like Itzak Perlman, I don’t think that is a reason to stop practicing and enjoying the place where we are transformed when we write.

This blog is about nonfiction book publishing, so for me, everything relates back to how to create something worth reading and worth publishing. How to package thoughts in a way that not only come straight from our hearts, but that also make a clear connection with the reader.

When I coach clients, my first job is get them to share their work. I may be the first person who has seen what they are creating, and they are afraid to open their hearts and minds to the slightest possibility of criticism. My job is never to say “no” to anyone’s work, but instead to help them best take what they know, think and feel and prepare it in a way that will allow for maximum communication with their audience – the people they want to reach.

As I say at the beginning of a new call with a new client, I am looking at your work from a “publishing strategist” point of view. You come to me, you want to be published. I look at your work to find the strengths that we can build on so that you can see that dream come true. If the work isn’t ready for prime time, I say so, and we talk about next steps.

Clear thinking leads to clear writing. Breakthrough thinking leads to breakthrough books.

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