Thursday, October 27, 2016

Reaching Your Readers by Tracy Krauss

Ever wonder why one person finds a book boring while someone else finds it fascinating? Why a friend raves about a certain author and for you their book falls flat? I just might have the answer...

Dayna Mazzuca's workshop called 'Reach Your Readers' was one of the most fascinating workshops I attended this past September at Inscribe's fall conference. In it, she attempts to answer these questions and sheds some light on what writers can do to reach their specific audience.

Her premise is that everyone of us perceive the world in a different way. We each have a nonverbal language and because of this we gravitate to people who 'get' us. (If you ‘get’ somebody, there is an inherent desire to spend more time with them.) Part of this theory is that we tend to read through our own set of lenses, too. This is your 'readers style' if you will, and we all have one. (It reminded me of the 'Five Love Languages' only the focus was on reading preferences.)

Usually, we write in the same way that we read. If we can identify our own ‘reader style’, we can more easily find our ideal readers, and therefore we will be more successful. We won’t be grating against the other demands of the other types of readers. People aren’t generic, of course, and it is difficult to slot everyone neatly into a box. However, readers do tend to be extremely consistent. How we read is a reflection of how we see the world. Once we learn to write for our readers (and subsequently market to them as well) the connection will be deeper and easier to make.

Five Types of Readers:
1. Scholar: Likes to have solid research and trustworthy facts. Trust is the most important thing. Can they trust what is written?
2. Social Connector: This is not necessarily an extrovert. They ask the question, “Who is involved?” They identify with the characters most and like things to be current.
3.  Change Agent: Wants to move things forward. Asks, “What is the purpose?” Persuasion is key.
4. Adventurer: these readers like action. What is the next adventure? They are immersed reader and feel deeply during reading.
5. Mystic: These readers are very analytical and reflective, immersing themselves internally in the writing. They are looking for the deep meaning. 

This has less to do with genre and more to do with the style of writing. She gave wonderful examples of each type within one genre. I thought I would be more 'mystic' but in fact I think I am more of an 'adventurer' with 'social connector' tendencies. 

Her book CALLED TO WRITE is available on iBooks. 


Glynis said...

Thanks, Tracy. This makes a lot of sense. Sometimes I feel kind of bad or wonder what's wrong with me when someone raves about a certain book that I can barely get into.
Good thoughts. Not sure if I fully fit into the reading categories, though!

Peter Black said...

Yes Tracy, it does make a lot of sense, as Glynis says.
Regarding slotting myself into the given categories though, I'm inclined to think I identify with two or perhaps three. However, it's maybe likely that one of the five is predominant, although I don't perceive that clearly, as yet. Thanks.~~+~~

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