Tag Archives: readers

My Life as a Reader

31 Jan

I remember my mother telling me when I was about seven, “You can read any book in this house.”

The books in our house were my dad’s history and science related books from Book of the Month Club, and my mom’s books about having and raising children and lives of saints and other holy people.

I read them all. I remember reading in one of the child related books about missing periods when a woman was pregnant, and wondering what the heck that meant, but I didn’t ask. On my dad’s side, I read Kon-Tiki and studied the descriptions of plants and animals in a nature encyclopedia.

An incident in second grade illustrates my devotion to reading. There was a small library in the back of the classroom. I had found a book that contained a story of a trio of girls who had a treehouse. I loved the story so much, I continued to read it during music class, holding the book beneath my desk. And of course my teacher, Sister Mary Siena, caught me and took the book away. Busted. In front of the entire class. But I wanted to read the book! A treehouse! Think about it! At the end of the school day, I took the book from the shelf again and brazenly approached the teacher. “May I check this book out and take it home to read?” She replied, “Do you think I should let you?” The book! The book! “Yes,” I answered. I checked it out. It was all worth it. I still love treehouses. And books.

Fast forward many years later, as a parent and a teacher. “Read what you want to read. Just read. Think.”

It’s all worth it.

Newest generation picking out a book.

Browsing for a good book.

 

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Conversations with Readers

2 Aug

One of the parts of being a writer that I like most is conversations with readers about my books, especially when they have questions about the characters, or want to know what is going to happen in the next book!

Their comments motivate me as a writer, because I want to keep my readers entertained and coming back for more.

Recently a couple of readers commented about a minor character in The Gate House. It is a character that I have especially enjoyed writing about, and I was happy that other people saw in “Elaine” what I did. It also encourages me to write more about her, and I hope to give her a bigger part in a future book.

Another reader has been questioning me about the future of the romance between Nara and Alex, which begins in The Gate House. No way will I give away my secrets! But I was very pleased that my readers care about my characters. It means that they are real to them as they are real to me.

I think it is important as a writer to pay attention to what my readers ask for and comment on. And their feedback motivates me when I sit down to write.

Readers — do you ever write to an author with comments or questions?

Writers — do you listen to your readers’ feedback and take it into account when you write?