I love words, especially the way they can evoke a feeling or bring a scene to life. Some people are particularly gifted at using words to influence others in a positive way. Story-telling through literature, beautiful language, and compelling characters are all ways in which words can deeply affect an audience. This is why I admire people who can craft a story that resonates with others or, at least, makes them think a little more deeply about the world around them. In today’s society, where everyone seems to have an opinion and the news is filled with both good and bad stories, it is more important than ever to be able to explain to people why you like something. The following will discuss some ways in which you can use writing to do this. It will also discuss some of the challenges that come with telling people why you like something, but that you wish to overcome.
1. The Genre You Choose Reveals a Lot About Your Taste
The first and most obvious way to explain why you like something is to identify the genre that you prefer and give a brief explanation of its elements. This could be something as simple as fantasy fiction being your favorite genre, or it could be more complex and involve your appreciation of the craftsmanship that goes into creating a good story within the confines of a particular genre. It would be odd to claim to like a genre you didn’t know much about, especially since there are so many confusing stereotypes that often go hand-in-hand with certain genres – vampires and werewolves being a prime example – but, in reality, this is rarely the case. If you are familiar with a lot of the work that falls under a certain category, you will have a much better understanding of what makes it special and why you prefer it over other genres or styles. For example, I have always been a fan of horror films and I frequently choose those when asked about my favorite genres, mainly because I feel like I can have an in-depth conversation about the intricacies of a horror film while also enjoying the film’s entertainment value. I can also appreciate good horror films that don’t focus too much on the gruesome aspects of killing, but rather explore the psychology of humans as a whole in regards to fear and aggression. Therefore, I can have an intelligent discussion about the themes in a film while also having fun and enjoying the cinematic experience – even the scary parts.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, you have the adventure fantasy genre, which is usually filled with whimsical creatures, magical battles, and large swathes of open wilderness that the protagonist must explore. While there is a lot of entertainment to be found in these tales, the real appeal comes from their ability to transport the reader to another world through words alone. Once you are immersed in the story, it can be difficult to remember that you are actually supposed to be using your imagination and creating an entire scenario in your head instead of letting the prose do the talking for you. In the same way that watching horror films can help bring out the imagination in children, reading and especially young adult fantasy fiction can have a similar effect, encouraging the reader to create their own fantasy worlds and battles.
2. The Better the Story, the More You’ll Enjoy It
As you would expect, the better the story, the more you’ll enjoy it. In most cases, this is literally true; the more you know about the story, the more you’ll be able to predict what is going to happen and the more you’ll enjoy being surprised by events that arise out of nothing more than chance. However, there are exceptions to this rule, which is why you should always prefer the unknown over the familiar when it comes to books and stories. Familiarity breeds contempt, as the saying goes, and being able to experience something new brings a freshness that greatly enhances the overall reading/viewing/listening experience. Just because something is new doesn’t mean that it is better than what you are already familiar with – often, the opposite is true – but that is part of the fun of the discovery process.
3. A Good Story Gets To The Point Quickly
One of the things that hurt the overall quality of literature in the early 21st century is the overabundance of detailed introductions and lengthy expositions that turned reading into something of an arduous task. In most cases, these are not necessary and often serve to slow the pace of a story, which, in turn, makes it less engaging. There is a reason why many classic novels were published with short stories in the middle – it was because they wanted to make sure the reader stayed interested and maintained focus, even when the action slowed down for a brief intermission. A short story is, by nature, much more efficient at getting to the point than an extended piece, simply because there is less room for fluff – and what is fluff anyway? Little details that don’t matter? Extra information that doesn’t enhance the narrative? – so, while there is plenty to learn from a short story, there is also less there to learn.
In many cases, a short story is also a good platform for a novelist or screenwriter to experiment with new narrative techniques or to see how a particular story mechanic can be used in a different way. A short story can be the launching pad for a series, which is why it is usually seen as a lower-quality literary work in comparison to a novel, where a series of linked stories can build on one another, gradually increasing in overall quality. In some cases, a series can even be traced back to its own short story, which serves to illustrate the point that quality does not diminish over time; it only evolves.
4. Thematic Rhythms And Structures Will Never Go Out Of Fashion
In the same way that there are seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and winter depression (winter blues), there are also certain narrative structures and thematic rhythms that never go out of fashion. It is a very rare occurrence for an author to write something that doesn’t fit into one of the following categories: a love story, a coming-of-age tale, a family saga, a historical fiction, a mystery, a horror story, a satire, or a dystopia.
These are all genres that have in common the feature of having a chronological structure, which means that the events that happen will inevitably follow a pattern and will occur in the order that they are presented. Thematic rhythms are the underlying patterns that can be traced through a text, which provides the reader with a greater familiarity and connection to what they are reading. The fact that these rhythms and structures are as old as human literature itself makes them all the more intriguing and appealing; it is a testament to the authors’ skill that these concepts still have value even today.
For example, we can look at the opening line of William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing – “Now is the winter of our discontent” – or, as the British author, George Orwell, himself, so beautifully put it, in his classic work, 1984:
“In the heart of London, there is an office block called Westminster Towers. This is the headquarters of Winston Smith, the unnamed main character in 1984, who works as a clerk in the Records Department of the Daily World.”
These are just two examples of how chronological and thematic structures provide a certain artistic and literary coherence to a piece of writing. It doesn’t mean that all good stories fit into these generic confines, but it is a safe bet that most authors will acknowledge and appreciate the fact that their stories fit into the same categories as many of the greatest fictions of all time.
5. A Good Story Is Worth Reading Once, Twice, And Three Times
Finally, we arrive at the most important principle of all: good stories are worth reading once, twice, and even three times. It is natural for a reader to want to know more about a story they have invested so much time and effort into – sometimes, this curiosity can even turn into a desire to reread something they enjoyed previously. In other cases, a story may end up on a reader’s to-read list simply because they want to know more about the author or the subject matter; sometimes, this may even turn into a genuine appreciation for the story itself. In any case, all these factors contribute to the fact that good stories, regardless of genre, will always have a place in society as long as there is someone willing to tell them.