When it comes to books, how easy are you to reel in? Do you swim against the current, requiring a strong line to tug you along? Or do you flow right in to a story’s net? I admit I can be a stubborn swimmer. I’ve become a more critical connoisseur of fiction. Occasionally I’ll abandon ship, but I’ll usually still swallow a tepid plot even while making a face. It just takes more to make my knees go weak from the complex flavors of a novel. Writing chops get me baited. Strong plotline pulls me in. It’s a magical moment when everything comes together perfectly and I’m happy to leap into the boat without resistance.
A couple weeks ago COTT put up a survey asking how long you give a book to reel you in. We received 54 responses! So today we’re going to share those results and many of the comments that came in:
35.2% said one chapter
46.3% said until they lose interest
7.4% said they finish every book they start, regardless of interest. (God bless ’em)
- I know some stress the first paragraph and even the first line, but I don’t want my reading to become fast food. Don’t bore me with bad writing, but give me something to savor, something to enjoy for a while. Hopefully, my own writing will do the same.
- I always try to give the author a chance, as some great books have slow beginnings.
- I am the eternal optimist! I keep thinking, “I know its gonna get better. I just know it.” So I trudge along, supporting the author the best I can until finally…I can’t go any further. I have noticed that I have a much more critical eye than I used to, though. So maybe my patience isn’t quite as long as it used to be. I just hate to give up on ANYBODY!
- I love it when I’m hooked in the first few pages. Definitely must be in first chapter. I no longer feel obligated to finish a book I can’t get into. Twice this year I’ve chosen not to finish books that failed to hook me.
Thank you to those who participated in the survey–we love giving readers a voice! Throughout the week we will be interviewing our competing authors and collecting your names for our book giveaway so be sure and join us.
And now an exciting announcement:
bio: Michelle Massaro is a homeschooling mom and aspiring novelist, as well as Assistant Editor for the literary website Clash of the Titles . Connect with her on twitter @MLMassaro, facebook, and her blog Adventures in Writing