Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

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Readers as Unicorns

Here's an interesting article about readers as unicorns, and the art of attracting them. 

Now if I were trying to attract a unicorn, I'd start where I would with any form of wildlife: the environment.  What do they like?  Vast tracts of unspoiled land.  Well, I'm fucked there, but I can certainly make my yard a more hospitable place.  I've spooked deer out of it.  A unicorn wouldn't surprise me. There are lots of overgrown nooks and crannies where wildlife can hide.  I'd make sure the habitat included lots of different plants.  Here, unicorn, have some clover.  Eat the frigging pasture roses, they're invasive.

Readers?  The article makes a valid point about satisfying emotional experiences.  That's the core of all entertainment, really. So I just look for the things that readers love most.  This is actually easy to identify -- just check the most popular motifs in fanfic.  Those are things that people love so much, they'll make their own, a zillion times over.  So I just load that stuff directly into my canons.  You want two boys kissing?  Pucker up.  You want the villain and the hero to make up already?  Here they are.  You want heroes of color?  Aho!  Ashe!  You want the whole QUILTBAG?  Wheeeeee rainbows rainbows everywhere!  :D

It's not actually that hard.
Tags: how to, networking, reading, writing
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