Bound or Folded

“The difference is pace. You’ve got to move a newspaper story at a breakneck pace since the reader is only going to be with you for five minutes. A magazine story has to make the reader want to commit more time. If you get a magazine reader to commit to only five minutes you’ve failed.

“A book is something else entirely. Not to be too grand about it, but a book ought to alter the reader’s life, add to the reader’s life, in some fundamental way. You have a contract with the reader that if he gives you the time then something will be better for him. His understanding will increase, an emotional satisfaction will ensue, a cathartic experience will take place. A book has to make something happen.

“A newspaper story informs, a magazine article entertains, and a book has to move you.”

Richard Ben Cramer in The New New Journalism by Robert S. Boynton.

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