Are You Meeting the Expectations of Your Readers?
Guest post by Irene Watson
Nothing brings you expert status faster than being the author of a book, whether you intend it to happen or not. Think back….remember to the time before you were an author. I sure am and what I remember is thinking that being an author is a prestigious title to have, one that sets the person aside from others that aren’t authors. And, didn’t you, in your mind, think that the authors of books are talented, smart, creative, gifted, and so on? And, didn’t you also think the authors are “experts” in their field? I sure did and I know I’m not the only one.
Well, guess what? Others are thinking the same of you. So, my question to you today is: Are you meeting the expectations of your readers?
As an expert in the topic or field you are writing about, you are taking your reader on a journey. And, it’s important to know your audience. But, it’s also important to know that your audience is on the same level as you are – you can’t write to anyone on a higher level than you are yourself.
One example is the level of expertise that goes into your book. Researching specifics (even for fiction) are important. Avid readers expect reality. For example, today I received a review from one of our reviewers. She commented:
… However, I had some issues with the book, as well. The element of time confused me. … And can four people really fit in an airplane bathroom?
Hummm….there is hardly enough room in an airplane bathroom for one person, let alone four. Making reference that four people fit into an airplane bathroom is not reality. I’m afraid the author of this specific book lost credibility with her readers. Unless, of course, the author is writing to an audience that doesn’t know 4 people can’t fit into an airplane bathroom. This is what I mean about knowing your reading audience. This author wasn’t writing to an audience that knows how small an airplane bathroom is, but the fact is, this particular reader does. This example may seem like it’s not relevant, but, it is. Readers want and expect good writing. After all, the “author is an expert.”
Irene Watson is the Managing Editor of Reader Views, where avid readers can find reviews of recently published books as well as read interviews with authors. Her team also provides author publicity and a variety of other services specific to writing and publishing books.