One of Emily Dickinson’s well loved poems begins,
I died for beauty, but was scarce
Adjusted in the tomb,
When one who died for truth was lain
In an adjoining room.
These lines came to me recently when I was being interviewed for my newly released novel, Trompe l’Oeil. One question that always stumps me is who do I wrote for? Who do I consider my target audience to be?
I should have an answer to that question because it speaks to marketing savvy; but I don’t. If I were to reply honestly I’d say, “I write for beauty. I write for truth. I write for me.”
I don’t answer honestly, of course, because my reply would garner a pair of raised eyebrows and leave people with the impression that I am egocentric which, living alone as I do, may well be the case. But who else would I write for? Writing is a conversation I have with myself about my efforts to make sense of the world. All in all, consciousness — what it is, why it is, and how it came to exist – is a mystery. So, too, is the unholy mix of good and evil that consciousness bestows — a struggle between impulses that is the basis of our compassion.
To understand myself, that’s why I write. If that’s egocentric then so be it. But it’s not really me I’m looking for. I’m searching for some universal within me, my umbilical cord to the cosmos. I don’t know whether I’m an optimist or a fool, but I believe a few travelers might share my sense of wonder and will want to journey with me. I write for them.
(Courtesy of tribesofcreation.wordpress.com_