Guest Post: How to Understand the Author’s Message

Hello readers and happy new year! I’m currently editing Molly Miranda 3 and hope to have it in my editor’s hands in the next few weeks. When that happens, I’ll be announcing the title and cover of Book 3 and I’m so excited. Here’s another guest post from Lucy Adams on writing. Cheers!

Very often, when reading a new book, we only see the information that is on the surface and do not notice what is between the lines. In fact, the real depth and beauty lie in these elusive signs and symbols that our attention misses.


But how to see the true idea that the author sought to convey? How not to lose sight of his true message? How to learn to read between the lines?

Every book is a new world, a journey into a dimension with a variety of images, interesting thoughts and, of course, a hidden subtext. I want to share with you simple methods that will help you to find the key to any literary work.

#1 Read with Someone Else’s Eyes

Reading a book, we unconsciously look for credibility and compliance to the real world. Try to read not with your eyes, but rather find a special point that allows you to fully enjoy the historical, cultural, personal, and social context. Try to transfer your consciousness into the historical moment and the epoch described in the book.

#2 Don’t Forget About the Subtext

Never take the whole book literally. The sun is never just the sun, and the rain never falls just like that. Perhaps, it tells you that spring will come soon.

As well, the violence always conveys the additional literary sense. It may be social or cultural, biblical or allegorical, or just a metaphor. In literature, we can distinguish between two main types of violence: the author’s violence – harm or wound inflicted by one character to another – and the violence harmful to all the characters.

Therefore, reflect, look for connections, and feel the mood and atmosphere that the author tried to convey.

#3 Do Not Get Stuck with a Protagonist

Any hero must fit the special requirements of the plot. Each character is a part of the story, and this allows the narrative to move on. The heroes are always in action, and if the plan requires to sacrifice them, they can either be eliminated or pass through many trials. But all these plot twists happen according to the logic of literature and finally, leads the story to the finale.


#4 Pay Special Attention to Geography

Geography in literature differs from the usual understanding. As a rule, books describe not the geography of the city, plains, oceans or forests but the characters and the influence of the specificities on them.

Moreover, geography may become an independent character that plays an important role in the plot. A talented author can make it a separate topic. In other words, it may work for itself. The environment described in the novel provides us with a guide to the history, psychology, and sometimes to the heart of the author’s ideas.

#5 Carefully Treat Irony

This is a very powerful tool to change our view and expectations. The irony always involves a contradiction and adds some special sharpness. Things happen which we don’t expect to happen. However, the irony is so polysemous that many readers don’t even notice it in a well-crafted story.

#6 Let Your Imagination Fly

What comes to mind when the character is in a free flight? We can assume that he’s a superhero, a crazy or even an angel. The author puts much more sense than it seems at first glance. The flight can mean freedom, love, greatness or even escape – all these are the author’s flights of fancy. So please let your fancy get off the ground and fly!


#7 Notice Symbolic Acts

If the character fell into the water and got wet or managed to escape and reaches the surface, it means the author tells us that the character was born again. This is a symbolic act that signifies a new beginning while death often means the loss of spiritual significance. Such plot twists can tell us pretty much!

Often we can meet a special feature, object, item, etc. that got nothing in common with the characters and the plot. The inappropriate reference pushes you to think wider. Consider what you know about this symbol, and you will realize that this is a hint!

Physical imperfections of characters, unusual names, and weirdness are also signs by which authors demonstrate that the plot will have an unexpected twist at some point. For example, the blindness of the hero tells us that he may have some extra abilities. These tricks often carry a special thematic or psychological sense.

#8 Times of the Year Matter

Seasons, perhaps, are one of the most famous literary tricks. Spring always means youth and dreams; summer – maturity, ambitious plans, and love; fall – fatigue or decay; winter – old age or even death. In fact, the relationship between age and seasons has already been used for thousands of years and is mentioned in almost every mythology.

Why is the art style so complex? Why are the texts so layered? The answer is simple: this way it becomes more interesting to read! Be attentive, pay attention to details, think wider, and soon you will discover what the author hides between the lines!


Lucy Adams is always ready to provide you the best assignment help. She’s an aspiring author who never refuses to cover burning and intriguing topics. Feel free to share your best ideas and soon you’ll get a couple of high-quality papers. Lucy typically covers topics related to education, books, and literature. However, she switches to other niches at times.

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