on Writers Helping Writers:
As writers, fusing our protagonist with the reader creates the ultimate reading experience. Teacher and writer John Gardener referred to this as “the fictional dream.” It’s a state the reader reaches whereby they feel as though they are inside the story, inside the character’s skin, going through events themselves.
Achieving this dream-like state is difficult, while undermining it is surprisingly easy to do. But there are three simple tricks you can utilize that increase the odds of drawing your reader into a literary dream from which they won’t want to wake up.