Writing and reading decrease our sense of isolation. They deepen and widen and expand our sense of life; they feed the soul. When writers make us shake our heads with the exactness of their prose and their truths, and even make us laugh about ourselves or life, our buoyancy is restored. We are given a shot at dancing with, or at least clapping along with, the absurdity of life, instead of being squashed by it over and over again. It's like singing on a boat during a terrible storm at sea. You can't stop the raging storm, but singing can change the hearts and spirits of the people who are together on that ship.
Think of a fine painter attempting to capture an inner vision, beginning with one corner of the canvas, painting what she thinks should be there, not quite pulling it off, covering it over with white paint, and trying again, each time finding out what her painting isn't, until she finally finds out what it is. And when you finally do find out what one corner of your vision is; you're off and running.
This is our goal as writers, I think: to help others have this sense of wonder, of seeing things anew, things that catch us off-guard, that break in on our small bordered worlds. When this happens, everything feels more spacious. I think this is how we are supposed to be - present and in awe.