Monday, November 23, 2015

Well Said: The reader's creative effort

Reading is often seen as a passive act: we lie back and let writers pipe joy into our brains. But this is wrong. ... When we read stories, this massive creative effort is going on all the time, chugging away beneath our awareness.
Jonathan Gottschall, The Storytelling Animal
Gottschall is referring to the fact that we fill in so many details ourselves when reading. We know how a character's face should look, the details of their clothing, the surroundings of the action in a way that the writers haven't described.

It is certainly one of the reasons I tend to avoid movies made from books I love. They never get those things right. How could they? They weren't in my head when I learned to love the book.

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