Speak to your audience

If you’re of a technical mind, you may want to write for bottom-line sort of people. If you prefer to examine issues thoroughly, there’s an audience for that, too.

Make your audience feel smart, not lost. Show them what’s happening in a language they’ll appreciate. As your characters interact, have them move and breath; not, “he said, ‘call the police,'” but,

Mirrored sunglasses asked, “call the police” and strode back to the store, pulling a gun and expertly adjusting it.

When you have the germ of an idea,  envision specifically whom you want to reach (a family member, a friend, a mentor, your childhood bully, the thief who stole your phone and thinks it’s funny, yourself) because that person, that audience, will ultimately decide whether your story is a success.

That bears repeating: at the end of the day, if your story doesn’t reach into your reader’s chest and grip them then it’s not successful.  And your reader decides, not you, whether it’s successful; not because the reader pays for it, but because they admit your ideas into their skull and let you walk around in there. Nothing more personal than that.

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