By Steve Weddle
So there's this image running around the internet:
The popular response is: "LOL! So true!! LOL!!"
For some reason, readers seem to think that writers don't put much thought into the things in their books. Maybe that's true for some writers.
I heard John Updike talking once about how he writes novels. He'll go through the story, get the "who does what" down. Then he goes back through and links up images, tweaks here and there to work in another layer to help tell the story through, for example, the color of the curtains -- a thread pulled through the narrative, so to speak.
I can guarantee you that Haruki Murakami gives thought to these things. Ann Beattie. Other writers I greatly admire.
Now, maybe the writers you read don't do that. Maybe the books you write don't work past that first layer. That's fine, I guess.
And you can LOL all day long about how a teacher tried to help you see those layers in the books you read. Fine. LOL all you want.
I just don't see it as something be proud of.