Emotional Commitment


Let’s say that you have a work jam-packed full of powerful ideas, bristling with exciting and recognisable characters, and filled with attractive power - what could go wrong?

In brief, you could fail to sustain the above to the degree you need to in order to produce emotional commitment.

Average readers are stubborn beasts. Sensitive readers can be even more stubborn. They don’t just want the above - they want so much of it that they will then yield up to you their most heart-felt treasure: feelings. Once you have captured some of their emotions, they will forgive you many faults.

Think of the books that you admire deeply even when you can see that they are not perfect; think of the television shows or films you've seen which you love despite several irritating aspects. You can win as a writer if you can get enough of an emotional commitment from readers. And the good news is that this isn’t that difficult to do.

1. Do you experience problems getting emotional commitment from readers?

Of course, this means that you must expose your work to readers. Have they expressed any emotions at all?

The thing with emotional commitment is that it is usually a ‘slow-build’. It’s unusual to be able to capture genuine commitment from readers early on in a tale, without using melodramatic tricks like putting a child or animal in danger immediately in an opening scene. To generate real warmth and pull off an authentic emotional effect usually takes a sustained effort. In practical terms, that means that you probably won’t be able to gauge your success or failure on this score until you have produced at least one complete work and had several people read it.

So your main ‘problem’ here