The Average Reader (updated)
Thanks for the correction, Karen.
I like this story. It has plenty of ambiguity, but not so much that the average reader can't figure out what is going on.
This is clipped from a recent review in Tangent by James Palmer. I have absolutely no aim to start a brawl here, or to incite rage when I ask this question. I ask out of a sincer desire to have other people answer me: Who is the Average Reader?
I wonder because doesn't everyone think of themselves as the average reader? And if so, how can we make assessments of books and stories and literature in general by applying a theory of an average reader's understanding quotient? If you're reading, James, I mean no disrespect. But I don't understand who this average reader is and how it can be used as a factor in assessing the value or success of a story.
Anyone have illuminating ideas?
My previous post is actually much more important and interesting to me. But I couldn't help but ask this question when it occurred to me so urgently.