Heavy Handed Writing*

I’m sure you’ve all read a book that gives up too many clues before the mystery has been solved. It’s irritating, right? You probably say to yourself, “Why should I even finish this?” Maybe you don’t or maybe you stick around just to see if there is a twist (and then are really disappointed when there isn’t).

These giveaways happen in other areas of writing too. Maybe the author uses stereotypes or slams you over the head with their political platform. (And FYI, stories with a moral are totally out of style. Apparently agents want us to leave that kind of writing to Aesop).

This is actually something I’m struggling with right now with my WIP…not because I want to put a moral into the story but because I’m afraid someone will imagine there is more meaning than I intended. The world I’ve created is divided into three groups of people. The rulers aren’t exactly evil, but they are close-minded and fearful of change. I’m not making a statement about our world, any particular government, or any political party. It’s just a story.

So here’s my question: Do you think that all the classical writers intended for modern-day readers to dissect their works looking for meaning? Or did they just write because they wanted to tell a story?

*I almost titled this post, “The Write Touch” but it was so cliche I wanted to gag. And, every time I thought about it New Kids on the Block’s “The Right Stuff” would play in my head. No one wants to hear ohoh-oh-ohoh over and over again while imagining teenage boys doing a weird-looking penguin shuffle step. Right?


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