Friday, March 30, 2018

Why Should People Read Fiction?

I see things all the time about the questions we ought to be asking ourselves as writers.  Questions we ought to know the answers to.

For instance, who's your target market?

I'm all like "I don't know... people who read?"

The other night, the question "Why should people read fiction?" was presented on FB. 

I'm all like "No clue." If someone came up to me tomorrow and asked me why they should read fiction, I'd probably be like 'if you don't already read it, I can't help you'. 

Or if they asked me why they should read my books in particular, I'd begin by asking them questions instead of giving them a straight answer.  "Do you read fiction?" Check.  "What kinds of books do you like to read?" If they name any of the genres I write, I'll give them a bookmark, point out which books meet their specifications, and let them decide.  If they still asked why they should read MY books instead of someone else's, I'd probably stare at them blankly.  Or maybe blurt out the answer, "because they're fun".  Which isn't really an answer when you think about it. 

The answer to why I read fiction changes with the time of day, my mood, current events, life, etc.  It's an escape, it's a stress reducer, it's research, there's nothing on TV, something pissed me off and I want to forget about it for a while, I'm procrastinating... 

Maybe that's why I can't come with an answer for someone else. 


Do you have an answer?  What would it be?


  1. I read genre fiction because it's an escape from reality. Lately, I've needed a lot of escape.
    I read romance because I love feeling that new love all over again and happy endings make me feel good.
    I read horror because I get a kick out of how people react to strange circumstances. I'd like to think I'd act differently! Or maybe HOPE I would.
    I read suspense because it's exciting. Then again, I love riding roller coasters, too. :)
    People who don't read fiction just don't know what they're missing!

  2. Yeah, I don't have answers for those questions either, which is why I'm probably still a low mid-lister. I know why I read fiction: Because real life stinks and I like getting lost in someone else's world. Why type of fiction do I read? Whatever catches my eye, though I lean toward paranormal/urban fantasy and mystery/suspense, all of it preferably with at least a touch of romance and a HEA. It's the same reason I watch TV. Escape. I don't want "messages." I don't political stances/causes/etc. in my fiction. I want a good story with characters I can love and love to hate. Which is why I read you. Good stories with characters I can love and love to hate, in well-crafted worlds where, if there isn't a HEA, there's at least a chance for one. And now I need more coffee.

  3. I read fiction for the same reasons you and Silver do, plus, occasionally, to escape pain.

    Target audience? Anybody who enjoys fantasy. Beyond that, no clue. It's a question I can't wrap my head around.