Many of the people I meet and have discussed writing with assume that I must write stories with literary merit. I’m not sure why they assume thing, but they do. To me literary merit involves symbolism, the literary devices learned about in English courses, and writing to hold a mirror up to society. This usually results in stories that make a person wonder what the character is living for. These stories are depressing and the author seems to want the reader to question why they would want to live. Also known as the great Canadian novel.
I don’t write those. I don’t usually like reading those, though occasionally I find one worth the read. The stories I write are not meant to have literary merit. If there is any in them it happened by mistake or accident. I accept that other writers add these things in deliberately, however I don’t see why they should assume I do as well.
I write solely for entertainment, whether it be mine or the reader’s. If you read my work and were entertained, I consider my job done. I don’t need to add in any underlying messages or deep life philosophies. With all the books out there that have literary merit, I don’t think mine need it.
So, if you’re a writer and you are talking to another writer, don’t assume they write poetic prose with literary merit unless they have said so or you have read it written by them. And if you are reading something I’ve written, I hope you were entertained.