>What do you read first?

>Sorry I’m late in posting; I’ve had company all week. Each morning, we had a competition for the newspaper. My brother grabbed the sports section, saw no news about his California teams, and settled in with the crossword puzzle.

I looked for the Living section to read the comics, the TV news, the show-biz gossip and the weather. Yes, a true-blue newsie should go right for the hard news, but I don’t. I ease into that, working backwards. I do read the business section because I feel a direct connection to my life. I glance through Metro, which is all Portland news and of little interest to me. I skim through the national and international news because I feel like I should, but it’s too depressing to dwell on. In my local paper, I read the obits first to see if anyone I know died and to learn whether I’ll be asked to play music for any upcoming funerals at my church.

There’s a lesson here. People read what they care about, what affects them and what can improve their lives. I recently thought about all the notes I’m taking on our experience with my husband’s Alzheimer’s and realized most readers don’t want to read our tale of woe; they want to know how they can avoid getting this disease and what to do if they get an AD diagnosis.

If we want to publish, we need to move outside ourselves and consider what the readers are looking for.

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