Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Authors Don't Always Write Good Books Every Time

I read a wonderful book recently,which shall remain nameless for reasons apparent farther into this post.
It was a real page turner and so well written that it grabbed me in the opening pages and held on until I closed the book after finishing it.

I decided I'd like to read something else by the same author, so I looked up her credits and found that the book I'd just read was her second published novel. I checked out her first book at our library and was eager to read it.

What a disappointment it was. It was a historical novel, like the other book, but set in an earlier time. It had all the elements of what should have been a good novel. There was a little romance, a mystery, a ghost, descriptive passages, an interesting setting. But I had to littering slog through it. There was an abundance of unnecessary material, and I got frustrated waiting for something important to the tale to happen. I kept plugging away at it thinking it was going to get better. It didn't. Finally, after going two-thirds of the way through the book, I flipped to the final chapter to see what happened to the characters. It was then that it hit me that I didn't really like any of these people, could not relate to any of them. The whole dreary thing disappointed me.

It made me wonder why an author cannot write a winning story every time. Maybe it's like a race horse who cannot win the race every time they fly out of the starting gate. And maybe we shouldn't expect an author to write the same kind of story (an interesting one) every time. The ones who stay in our minds and who make lots of money writing have the ability to do that. Maybe we shouldn't expect it of every author.

I don't write novels,, but I do know that some of my essays and inspirational creative nonfiction is better than others. It would be wonderful to have a winner every time, but that might happen only in a perfect world.

I reminded myself that even though this author had written one excellent book and one not so hot, she did get two novels published which is more than a good many writers can claim.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed your post. Reading one of those "not so hot" books is why I wrote my first novel (which still remains unedited). I was about halfway though that uninteresting novel, when I closed the book, stood up, and opened a word document. And like you say, hers was published, mine isn't, although it might be if I were to go back and re-write it with the knowledge I have today.