What Role Does Empathy Play In Writing?

From the archives: where does empathy come into play when writing?

Allison Maruska

I saw this pic on Twitter, shared by @TheUnNovelist.

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This could be the best part about writing – you get to walk around in someone else’s skin for a while (and I don’t mean that in a creepy Silence of the Lambs kind of way). Want to see life through the eyes of a child? Or a refugee? Or a World War 2 soldier?

How about someone who makes you uncomfortable?

Reading fiction develops empathy, especially if the story goes deep into the character’s psychology. This article discusses the role of empathy in telling a story.

By writing about others, we get to transcend our own thoughts, our own worlds, our own lives, and experience another’s. This is how we connect with the rest of humanity, through story.

Writers, then, are the great connectors. We enable our readers and ourselves to experience the rest of humanity, to feel…

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