A Trusted First Reader

When writing, it is always best to keep one’s audience in mind. Who will be reading your work? Who will go over it? Who will it most affect? Yet sometimes it is incredibly hard to come up with an answer to such a question. The audience that one writes for, the audience that is right the forefront of our decisions as writers is the trusted first reader. This is the someone who will read your words first, the one for whom you intend your work.

Finding that reader, for me, depends on what I am working on. If I am writing here, I write mainly for my professor and the members of my writing group who I know are invested in what I write. I write for them remembering our discussions in class, things that we have admitted we struggle with, and challenges we all face in our writing. When I am writing for my internship, I keep in mind my editor and the other interns. They are the ones who will see my work firsthand, helping me shape it into what it needs to become. I also keep in mind the professors I know will be scrolling through the blog where my work is posted. I do the same with my job at The Odyssey, focusing on my editor and my peers as my primary audience and letting the piece grow from there. Yet when I write for myself, in a journal or in the margins of my science notebook, I write with someone I care about in mind, whether it be one of my siblings, one of my parents, a significant other, or a friend. No matter what I write, I write it for who I know it will affect the most.

An important thing to keep in mind, especially as a writer and if you are helping others with their work, is that you are possibly their trusted first reader. They are writing for you and looking to impact your life. They are searching for the advice and inspiration that you can give them. Everything you expect from a trusted first reader is what they expect from you. It’s kind of a mind-boggling thought when you really think about it. We are someone’s audience. There is writing being written for us.

The audience is why we write. You’ll be amazed at how much easier it makes writing and how much inspiration you will find.

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One Comment

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  1. Hey Beth,

    i’m not sure if your blog posts have magically disappeared or if you just haven’t done that many of them so i’m replying to your morning pages instead.

    I think that the audience in incredibly important in writing and i also think that it’s important to disregard your audience in certain circumstances. I would agree that it’s important to think about your audience so far that you approach certain subjects and use language in a manner that is accessible and invites the audience to think your way. but i also think that it is important to say what you have to say and not cater to a certain person or audience just so that they like your writing,

    I also like the point that you made that you can be someone’s special audience or the targeted group for a piece of writing. It is important to be critical and think about the ideas that are presented to you in writing, but it is also important to understand how much your opinion matters and to be kind and thoughtful with your words.

    Like

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