Writer’s Desk: Take Readers on a Journey

Nigerian writer Ben Okri frequently blurs lines between reality and the beyond. His breakout novel, The Famished Road, is about the spirit of a child (named for Lazarus) who has never quite left the physical world but is being enticed to do so by other spirits.

Often categorized as an African magic realist, Okri has talked about how his writing is not necessarily about just telling a story:

My writing isn’t about what is on the page, it’s intended to take you somewhere, it’s your journey to that somewhere. The journey is the point…

Many readers want plot and a satisfying ending, of course. But if you can’t take them out of their lives and into the world of what you are writing, they may be less likely to stick with it until the end.