Our job as Authors

Writing Excuses Season 7 (episode 10) with David Brin. He’s talking about murder mystery, but I think the passion with which he speaks and the imagery is encouraging for authors of all genres.

[At the resolution of the mystery] “What you want is the third possible action:a shocked dismay in the reader’s face, pounding their head, hating themselves from being five IQ points from figuring it out, and of course they would have been disappointed if they had figured it out.

You want them to rip the book in half, throw it out the window and dive after it. And that proves that you have a sadomasochistic relationship. Your job is to make the reader late for work, unable to sleep, unable to do their homework. You want to make them unable to feed their kids. If you do all this to them, they will buy your next book.”

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