“Tris: “I was reading.”
Sandry: “You’re always reading. The only way people can ever talk to you is to interrupt.”
Tris: “Then maybe they shouldn’t talk to me.”
― Tamora Pierce, Briar’s Book
Tamora is a celebrated young adult author who has a way of making incredible characters with very modern problems and then placing them in fantastical words full of magic and strange creatures.
All writers tend to have this skill at some level, but I remember Pierce’s characters were so real to me. They felt like my best friends when I was too quiet to make friends in real life. I remember the characters in Pierce’s books like they were real people in my past.
Come to think of it, I might remember those characters better than the actual people from my past…
Anyway, I picked this particular quote because it is sharply reminiscent of what I directly identified with in my childhood (about the time I was reading these books). I’m pretty sure that conversation was lifted directly out of a scene between me and my mother. I only wish I had such snappy comebacks. Which of course only made me like Pierce’s characters even more.
The complete accuracy with which Pierce describes the life of a die-hard reader shows an important skill Pierce exploits as a writer. Know your audience. After you’ve chosen your genre, knowing the age and general life situation of your desired readership can create that desired connection between yourself and your readers that leads to life-long fans. Someday maybe an aspiring writer will write a blog post detailing how your writing inspired them to want a connection with their own readers. And so the circle of life continues.
So don’t be afraid to do a little research. Read a couple books in your chosen genre. Do some google searches about the demographics of who buys what genre at what age.
I’m always a proponent of the merciless use of any advantage that can make you a better writer.
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