Ideal Reader

The Ideal Reader

There will always be someone on the other side, someone willing to read your story.

If you’ve ever read a book on literary theory, you may already have an idea of what the “ideal reader” is. Yes, because every story must have a reader. What exactly do we mean when we talk about the ideal reader?

Ideal Reader
The secret of independent writers is to focus all their efforts on the sector of the public best predisposed to buy their books.

Ideal Reader and the Real Reader

The ideal reader is what in the publishing world is also known as the target audience. It is the type of reader your book is aimed at. No, a book doesn’t have to appeal to everyone, although it’s good if it does. When we talk about the target audience we try to narrow down and define what kind of people might be interested in your story. These readers usually have several common characteristics that define your ideal reader. By “ideal” we don’t mean perfect, but a reader who exists only in the writer’s mind. Another thing is the real reader, the one who will finally buy your book.

Differences Between the Ideal Reader and the Real Reader

The ideal reader is the target audience for a book while the real reader is the person who is reading it. The more similar the real reader is to the ideal reader, the better they will be able to interpret and understand the text.

Ideal Reader: This is the reader who is in the writer’s mind when he writes. This is the reader who will like the story the most and who will understand it the best.

Real Reader: A real person, with a name and surname, who finally reads the book.

Usually, real readers, people with names and surnames, fit the ideal reader for whom a book is written, but as in everything there are exceptions.

Should I Write with the Ideal Reader in Mind?

When I write, should I think about the reader, and who will read it? The answer is always the same. Yes, every narrative text must be intended to be read; what is the point of telling a story if this is not the case? We can write reflections, do therapy through writing, or write a personal diary for ourselves.

However, if you have ventured into writing short stories and/or novels, it is because you want to tell stories, and that necessarily implies the existence of a reader, at least an ideal reader. But if you want to write for yourself, without thinking that your story will be read, it does not make much sense to analyze what your ideal reader would be. If you want to write for yourself, you do not need to know what your target audience is. In some cases, the target audience (also known as the buyer in the business world) will be very clear. This is the case with novels and genre stories. For example, in a children’s book, which is our specialty at Dina Soul Writing, you can narrow down the type of reader depending on the vocabulary and length of the text. Age is a determining factor in this case. In romance novels, it is common to consider the ideal reader a young or middle-aged woman, although the age and socio-cultural level of such readers may vary depending on whether it is a young romance novel, a pink novel, or a chick-lit (romantic literary narrative). It is more difficult to define the target audience of the realistic novel, but we can always try to narrow it down a little depending on the themes we deal with, the literary style, the protagonist, or the narrative voice used.

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