"At the beginning, when I started to show my writing to people, to give readings from it, I had no audience. No one has an audience at the start, because no one is waiting. Certainly not for your work. To think that would be delusional. There was no audience for my writing. To the extent that I have one now, it is because, over time, say, 25 years of my writing’s being published, people called readers have come upon a story or novel or essay of mine and thought, I’d like to read more. This amazing relationship — a reader finding a writer whom he or she would like to read — begins accidentally and might become a habit or practice. If I think about readers who look forward to my next novel, I feel inspired to finish it. Those readers are important to me, though I don’t write for them. I certainly don’t want to disappoint them with a poor book or story; but I don’t write for them. I’m encouraged by the thought of them. In a real sense, readers are more important than writers. There are too many of us anyway, and too many write books that are nothing more than words used poorly in sentences that don’t signify in novels or stories that are primarily thoughtless. But readers — all readers should exist!"
What Would Lynne Tillman Do?
Red Lemonade, 2014