Audience motivates good Writing

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Writing is not the easiest of tasks. It is sometimes hard enough to collect your thoughts and much harder to put those thoughts down on paper. It is especially difficult to write about something that you are not interested in, which is something that often occurs in classrooms. Thompson’s book Smarter Than You Think gives the example of a teacher who encouraged his students to write online, and in this way the students wrote for an audience, and not just for a teacher. This motivated students to really take an interest in writing.

I think that humans naturally have a desire to look good in front of other people, and therefore when writing for an audience there is more motivation to write well. It also creates a desire to write something extraordinary and exciting. Writing for an audience that gives feedback also helps in developing your own skills and realizing your own strengths and weaknesses in your writing. This is very helpful, especially for someone like me who wants to be a professional writer. That is why I really appreciate classes like my screenwriting class, where each student gets to present a script and gets feedback from the whole class. This makes me not only want to write perfectly, but to also tell an amazing story.

The same type of thing is happening in this class, but instead of writing something I am presenting someone else’s writing. This also motivates me to do well for the sake of another writer, and also for the sake of those who will be reading this work on their ebooks and kindles. Having an audience is always an excellent motivator.



Gavin Oliver's picture


I also find it important to have an audience giving you feedback. I am in an internship this semester where we wrote stories that went through a couple rounds of edits, and while it is difficult to accept criticism and make changes to your writing, it is necessary to experience in college in order to adequately handle similar situations in the professional workplace.

kgthoma's picture

I can relate all too well.

Writing IS NOT easy! Hemingway once said, "There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed." I have been in numerous workshop classes and you do want your writing to be perfect in that situation, which is exactly what Thompson is talking about. Those classes are hard but they have made me a better writer.

kglasso's picture


I definitely agree that the audience makes your writing held to a higher standard. I also really like how you brought in InDesign to the post because it's something we're using in class right now that's currently driving me crazy.