I recently wrote about needing to read as a writer to understand market, audience and be able to recognize comparable titles/work. However, there is another problem I have found with being a writer that reads.
I don’t enjoy some of the books I find.
I don’t remember many books through my first 43-ish years that I didn’t enjoy. There might have one here and there, but overall, everything was quality and enjoyable.
So what’s the problem?
I think it is a number of things, but before I go into that, this is not meant as a slam on anyone. I know how difficult being a writer is. You put your heart and soul, blood, sweat and tears, and countless hours getting your “baby” to a point where you think it is ready to be shared. So kudos to all writers, published or not, I know what it takes. I get it. I’m there.
Recently I have read a few books that I struggled to finish, and actually one I just couldn’t. I got to about chapter 6 and that was as far as I could go. The writing was just poor and this book clearly wasn’t ready to be launched. I didn’t even know what it was about, even though I had read the book cover, it didn’t translate into the writing.
However, these books were published. Published. One by a small publisher and the other two self-pubbed. Both of the self-pubbed made note of editors, beta readers and critique partners.
If that is true, were they not good? Did they read it differently? Or… is it me?
Is it just because I am in the trenches too? I know the process and know what to look for. Is that why so many of the books I have read recently aren’t enjoyable? Meaning I’m reading it as a “critique partner” and fellow writer who is currently editing like a mad woman.
One book I read had a great story and was almost there, but I felt it could have used a little more smoothing and a bit more conflict. Some of the details were “too convenient.”
The first book (the one published by a small press) had a story line that I could follow but it wasn’t strong. Again poor writing, repetitive thoughts/themes and was boring.
And as mentioned above, I couldn’t even finished the 3rd one. All of the same things but without a solid story. I think I had read enough that I should have known what the point of everything was, but I didn’t.
As I prepare to self-publish, I don’t want to make these mistakes in my writing. I know that most are there currently, especially repeating thoughts. I’m actively editing and working out the bugs.
I’m sure people will still find my work awful, struggle with whether to leave a negative review while others won’t have a problem with leaving a bad review (possibly hurtful and not constructive). Okay, it’s part of being “out there.”
I think I’ll be launching my first around the end of this year/beginning of next, if all things go well over the next few months that is.
Good luck to all the writers out there. Don’t let people get you down, do the best you can and know that what I wrote above has more to do with me than you.