World, Writing, Wealth discussion

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All Things Writing & Publishing > Inform, educate, entertain

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message 1: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 13072 comments Yeah, it's BBC's motto, but some say it should equally apply to books. Well, should it?
Does your stuff perform these three functions?


message 2: by Graeme (new)

Graeme Rodaughan | 7084 comments 100% entertainment, unless you aspire to be a super-powered vampire hunter or rule the world, in which case there are a few informative tips.


message 3: by Jeffery (new)

Jeffery J. | 96 comments One reader's weed is another's flower. Me, if the story lacked anything to think about, I'd be bored. Learning entertains me. Like the opening of Jurassic Park, explaining the amber, etc.

Plus, it's harder to pull off than just letting one's imagination run wild in unrealistic ways. Does the person who sleeps beside you want to listen to your dreams every morning? Not likely. I liked culture better when dreams were routinely interpreted (well before Siggie).


message 4: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9211 comments For me, entertainment is mandatory (and I hope I succeed) but I also try to participate in the other two. In my science fiction, I try to explain a little science, and more importantly, in the educational aspects, I try to show how to think scientifically. Science is to a collection of facts, although you need them; it is a method for approaching your problems.


message 5: by Rita (new)

Rita Chapman | 152 comments To quote Bill Nye “Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don't ” and there is usually something in every book that you hadn't heard before.


message 6: by Jeffery (new)

Jeffery J. | 96 comments To beat a dead horse, some writers / readers actually see entertainment apart from enlightenment? I guess it's like saying junk food is not food. As long as that doesn't apply to French fries or chocolate.


message 7: by P.K. (new)

P.K. Davies | 353 comments It's got to be all about story-telling, that's the magic that people have felt since speech made sense. If the other things are part of the mix; great.


message 8: by Jeffery (new)

Jeffery J. | 96 comments Other things? Now days even writers can see story and meaning as separate! Got to have reason to be told to not just be reality TV for my taste.


message 9: by P.K. (new)

P.K. Davies | 353 comments Don't get that, Jeff. Explanation please?


message 10: by Jeffery (new)

Jeffery J. | 96 comments PK, you ever see Hidden Figures? It showed progress toward justice. Without that, the story could not have existed in any entertaining form. Not every story must be about (in)justice. But if it's about mindless butchering, say, without any explanation or motive, how's that entertaining? Obviously, it is to many kids, but it's not so much storytelling as it is a form of masturbation, IMHO.


message 11: by Graeme (new)

Graeme Rodaughan | 7084 comments An effective story will be meaningful. The specific meaning will be driven by the interaction of the reader with the story.

Readers have surprised me with the variations in meaning they see in my books.


message 12: by Jeffery (new)

Jeffery J. | 96 comments Cool, Graeme :)


message 13: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9211 comments The real question, though, Graeme, is how many see the messages you hoped they would see?


message 14: by P.K. (new)

P.K. Davies | 353 comments That doesn't matter, Ian. Not in fiction anyway. The beauty about the great books is that they keep revealing tha author over time.


message 15: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 9211 comments Treu, but as an author, when I put a message in there somewhere, i would really like to know SOMEONE got it :-)


message 16: by P.K. (new)

P.K. Davies | 353 comments I'm sure they have. We write alone but we don't read alone


message 17: by Graeme (new)

Graeme Rodaughan | 7084 comments Ian wrote: "The real question, though, Graeme, is how many see the messages you hoped they would see?"

Since my primary aim was to entertain - I'm happy if a reader enjoys the story.

It's what people focus on that surprises me.


message 18: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 13072 comments And what do readers expect from a book: just entertainment and escape or a bit of a new knowledge too?


message 19: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 5181 comments I like novels that entertain and give me some new information. Novels set in other cultures are especially interesting, as are ones that teach me something. But you have to make it interesting enough to keep me reading.


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