Interesting post on writing and keeping your audience’s suspension of disbelief

“We’ve all experienced that moment where you’re deeply immersed in a good story, only to have something disrupt that immersion. . . . And suddenly, where a moment before you were almost part of the story, now you’ve been thrown out of it and are a person looking at the pages of a book in which something doesn’t add up. It’s the author’s responsibility to avoid such disruption.

“The Laser Weapon Myth”, by J. L. Doty, on the Jim’s Blog section of, article dated April 9, 2009, last viewed August 17, 2o13

Just a quick post, been very busy recently, we’ve been harvesting for almost two weeks now with a one day break about a week back, so we’re all getting a bit tired.

J. L. Doty’s piece is a little bit about writing. And a LOT about lasers.

But he keeps up a good pace for an article that is often very technical, and there’s a lot of interesting tidbits along the way, like “It’s a sad weapon that can be defeated by holding up a piece of paper of the right color.” And there’s also an interesting anecdote about having his cotton shirt burnt by a infrared laser, but his polyester tie was much more resilient.

But really, what I liked most about it was his explaining why it’s an author’s job to keep the reader interested — and then demonstrating just that by making a very interesting article out of something that easily could have been sleep-inducing.

Link originally found through OregonMuse’s Sunday morning book thread for August 11, 2013, on Ace of Spades

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