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Seducing Your Readers
Let’s talk about sex.
Those of you who are uncomfortable with the subject, feel free to bail out now. I’m likely to get pretty raunchy.
Still with me? I thought so.
When we make love, most of us have a particular goal in mind: that moment when your entire body seems to stem from one central point, when every nerve-ending tingles wildly as fireworks assault your brain. That moment, of course, is orgasm, and anyone who has experienced one (or two or three)— especially with a willing and enthusiastic partner (or two or three)— knows that it can be an exquisitely pleasurable sensation.
But are all orgasms created equal? Of course not. The quality of our orgasms is directly related to the quality of the fun and games that precede them, not to mention our emotional bond with our partner, and our willingness (or unwillingness) to surrender ourselves fully to the moment.
So what, you’re probably wondering, does any of this have to do with writing?
YOUR WILLING PARTNER
Writing is an extremely intimate act. In his book, On Writing, Stephen King describes it as a form of telepathy. You put your thoughts on paper, and days, months, or even years later, someone reads your mind.
Think about it. With a simple arrangement of words, you have the potential to pull your audience into your mind where they can be stroked and fondled and toyed with— sometimes gently, sometimes rough. The result is often a partnership so strong and emotionally satisfying that neither of us ever wants to let go.
Who of us here can forget those times when we’ve read a book we didn’t want to end? And when the end did come, we felt drained, elated, and thoroughly satisfied, much like we do after a night of unbridled passion.
Getting to that place wasn’t an accident. The writer of the book—at least in most cases—didn’t merely fumble his way toward climax. If he (or she) did his job, every step was carefully choreographed to lead us around the third act corner toward the final pay-off. And the quality of that pay-off is related to one important thing:
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