I’m dissecting the article Hunting Down the Pleonasm, by Allen Guthrie, using it as a cattle prod to search for little nasties in my manuscript. Yep, you can join in the fun, too. Let’s take a looksee at topic #15
15: While it’s good to assume your reader is intelligent, never assume they’re psychic.
Ha! You all KNOW exactly what I’m thinking all the time DON’T YOU??????
I am sooooo guilty of this that it’s not funny. The thing is, that I can’t pick up on it myself. This is where my beta readers are indispensable to me.
I know what I’m thinking, so a scene “looks” the way I want it in my head. The problem is, I don’t always show or describe the scene to my readers. Since I have not mastered this myself, I cannot give great advice on it… but I can say that if your beta readers “don’t get it” your readers will not have that psychic link either. Trust your betas. They’ll tell you when they have no idea where your characters are.
Have you ever had a scene just start up, and never told the reader where it is? Then you’re guilty too!
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While it’s good to assume your reader is intelligent, never assume they’re psychic.
Why beta readers are indispensable to even the greatest writers.