by syaffolee

No Single Interpretation

From Neil Gaiman’s Journal:

“Once you’ve written something it’s not yours any longer: it belongs to other people, and they all have opinions about it, and every single one of those opinions is as correct as that of the author – more so, perhaps.”

I find myself agreeing with this. Readers bring in their own preconceptions and biases which color the work. It’s like comparing people’s perceptions of word meanings. Take “apple” for instance. I don’t think anyone else will be picturing the same kind of apple or have the same connotations that I am if that word is mentioned. But just because someone is picturing a Red Delicious while I’m thinking of a Granny Smith doesn’t mean that the other view is less valid.

This also reminds me of a publishing train wreck I came across here. Aside from the implications that Amazon’s review system has pretty much zombie-fied, the instance of an author and her posse heckling and stalking a reviewer for daring to state a negative opinion leave me wondering if they aren’t really Lord of the Flies escapees masquerading as grown women.