It’s not really always about pleasing as many people as you can, unfortunately. Sometimes you just need to be true to a story and do what’s best for it, even if it means more people will dislike it than like it.
Speaking personally, I’m simply content if a story of mine makes people think or provokes an emotional reaction, even if the story itself isn’t liked. That said, not everyone’s like me and some just simply want to entertain, in which case trying to please everyone might not be so bad. Nothing wrong with either anyway. And I’m sure I will write some stories where I simply seek to entertain. In fact, I do have a few on the back-burner, written from the 2nd person perspective where I would try to be inclusive of as many styles as possible.
Explaining the ‘I’ thing from my perspective, it’s kind of hard, honestly . . . I’ll try though. First of all, due to the set character, the options are more binary than you’d normally find, I guess. Usually . . . 2 options, sometimes 3. They’re tailored towards what that character might do. Not what the player might do. To make it count, however, I don’t make use of fake choices. I write out text for each, include scenes that can be missed, and I use a fair few *if statements, so it’s my hope it feels like the choices matter more despite it being a bigger workload for me (which I may not find viable in the end). I’ll try to give an actual example as well . . . the set character served in the army. His father’s recently died, so the story begins at the funeral. He’s also a recovering drunk, but given that he’s just buried his father and he’s becoming disillusioned with the world, there’s an option to go back to drinking or not to. Both are perfectly in line with the character, and both will obviously impact future events.
As far as I want the reader to feel when they’re reading? It doesn’t really matter as the reader will draw their own conclusions and feel what they want to, but what ‘I want’ them to feel is that they’re in the character’s head, essentially giving them a nudge towards one decision or another. Kind of like acting as their conscience. I don’t want them to feel like they’re ‘the character’, and hopefully it prevents the disconnect that is so prevalent in interactive games/stories, with people claiming ‘I didn’t have the option I wanted here, because it’s what ‘I’ would have done’. By their nature, games/stories are always limited anyway in the options they can give for players/readers, so every possible outcome can’t be accounted for. And what Flo said is correct too, in that I feel that ‘you’ is talking to you, the reader, telling you what you did/do.
Sorry for the long, rambling post, by the way. But I just like discussing game design, stories etc. Particularly because I feel interactive stories can be more affecting than linear ones, because the reader’s an active participant. And I just want to try and get more people open to games/stories that are more story than game, as there’s no set way for how a story has to be told. I feel that something is lost when you’re trying to cater to as many people as you can, rather than the actual main character/characters and the story itself.