Happy New Year! And happy monthly blogging with the Insecure Writer's Support Group! Join us!
I hope you all had a lovely and safe start to the new year :). Today's IWSG question is looking on the reader side:
Being a writer, when you're reading someone else's work, what stops you from finishing a book/throws you out of the story/frustrates you the most about other people's books?
That's a very good question, because understanding what may stop a reader, particularly YOUR reader, can keep you as a writer from making that same mistake.
One caveat though, not all readers are your reader. What will throw me off a book would be absolute gold to another reader--so the connection for us a writers is what does YOUR reader like.
I love characters. If you give me some amazing characters, some humor, a bit of snark, and send them off into trouble- I AM ALL IN. So, if I'm reading a book with flat characters, even if the world building, description, etc. is to make angels weep--I will DNF it (Did Not Finish).
The older I get, the pickier I become. Just because I DNF a book doesn't mean it's bad, it means I'm not the right reader for it. There are readers out there who LOVE long descriptions that go on for pages and don't really care as much about the characters specifically.
What throws you out of a book?
Happy IWSG day!
The characters are important, I totally agree with that. I don't have to like them all, but I do need to be interested in them.ReplyDelete
Yep! There are some characters that just aren't likeable. For me, as long as it's not the main one, I'm fine ;). Thanks for coming by!Delete
I seem to be logged into my JES Hays account and I'm not sure how to change that over to EJ Murray ... anyhow I agree about the characters. They have to be logical and believable though. I can't stand a Mary Sue or Marty Stu or a totally flawed character that I can't feel invested in!ReplyDelete
Agreed! Thanks for coming by!Delete
Good post. Good points. A story may not be right for one reader but may be right for another.ReplyDelete
Thank you. We have to remember that both as readers and as writers. Thanks for coming by!Delete
I enjoyed your post and agree. As I've gotten older, I've found it takes more to hold my interest. And yes, what doesn't appeal to me may very well be loved by someone else.ReplyDelete
Wishing you a Wonderful-Writing New Year.
Thank you! Have a wonderful-writing new year as well and thank you for coming by!Delete
Books are definitely subjective. One person may love a story, another may hate it.ReplyDelete
Exactly! Thanks for coming by!Delete
It's hard to say what will make a person stop reading a book. I've waded through some slooooow beginnings to be rewarded later. I've read about people with no redeeming qualities and made it to the end. Often I don't know what will turn me off until I've read it. Recently I came to a screeching halt in a book and refused to read another word after I saw the following sentence. ..."blank" sprang to life, her ample breasts swinging wildly. This description just totally befuddled me. Did "blank" begin doing jumping jacks? Start performing on a trapeze? Did her breast start whirling like helicopter blades? I closed the book, hit remove from device, and DNF this book. I guess this means for me, descriptions that are too off the wall will pull me out of a story and make me leave forever.ReplyDelete
LOL! Okay, when I read that line, I imagined breasts swinging like weapons. That would take me right out as well. Thanks for coming by!Delete
That is true about readers liking different things. I have realized my taste in movies is much broader than most, but my taste in books is much more narrow.ReplyDelete
Very interesting! Maybe because movies are a shorter time commitment? Thanks for coming by!Delete
True. When it comes to reading what's good for the goose isn't necessarily good for the gander. As a reader, what you like or don't like in a story might be the opposite for another reader.ReplyDelete
Personally, if I can't get behind the character, more than likely I won't finish book. But add numerous mistakes, a plot that started off well but falls flat, guarantees I DNF.
Very true-- yet many writers wail and gnash their teeth when folks don't like their book. Thanks for coming by!Delete
I agree about the characters. I don't have to like them, but I do have to be invested. I also like your point that not all readers are your readers. If we could remember that more often as writers, we might save ourselves some grief!ReplyDelete
A lot of grief! I remind myself that often ;). Thanks for coming by!Delete
I agree with you completely. Characters are really important to how a reader reacts to the story.ReplyDelete
They make it real for us! Thanks for coming by!Delete
Exactly! I had one reviewer love the first book in one of my series, and DNF the first book in another on of my series. Obviously one struck her and one didn't ;). Thanks for coming by!ReplyDelete