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Old 07-10-2013, 07:15 AM   #1
VydorScope
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What Makes You Put Down a Book?

Interesting infograph from Goodreads:

What Makes You Put Down a Book?
http://www.goodreads.com/blog/show/4...ut-down-a-book

From a writers point of view, I think this is revealing. Notice that very few people in this survey put a book down due to bad editing for example, yet that is one of the things most authors seem to scream about in their advice, "make sure its professionally edited" and etc. Not saying do not have your books edited, it is just an example.

What are your thoughts?
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Old 07-10-2013, 08:20 AM   #2
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Interesting that over 1/3 "Finish no matter what"

Interesting (perhaps unusual) characters, intriguing plot, great story are what matters.

Thanks for the link Vincent!
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Old 07-10-2013, 08:32 AM   #3
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See here for a full description of what reasons readers will give for chucking the book aside. Or, if the book is really bad, to just toss the ereader in the trash.

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=217375


1) Egotistical, argumentative, narrow-minded writers. (If I encounter this kind of mind-set, then I won't even bother to read the book.) This has happened on some occasions when I look at reviews on Amazon and the author comes back as an argumentative jackass.

2) A writer who can't be bothered with proofreading his/her book, due to innate laziness or a 'huh?' attitude. Death is always around the corner, but that book doesn't have to be. NEXT!

3) [As a moderator and reader]: Writers/publishers who can't be bothered to read our guidelines - on a repeated basis, I mean. I won't be bothered to read the book. And that author/publisher is usually history, anyway.

4) [As a moderator and reader]: Writers who are so incredibly lazy that they repeat the same old promotional phrase every 7 days for an update posting here at MobileRead. (Examples: 'Updating,' or 'Another new week, so another update.' I mean - THAT'S IT?)





Don

Last edited by Dr. Drib; 07-10-2013 at 08:57 AM.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:15 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Drib View Post

3) [As a moderator and reader]: Writers/publishers who can't be bothered to read our guidelines - on a repeated basis, I mean. I won't be bothered to read the book. And that author/publisher is usually history, anyway.

4) [As a moderator and reader]: Writers who are so incredibly lazy that they repeat the same old promotional phrase every 7 days for an update posting here at MobileRead. (Examples: 'Updating,' or 'Another new week, so another update.' I mean - THAT'S IT?)

Don
Both of these points are a personal dislike of the PERSON, not the book. So not sure that applies here. 99.9999999999999999999998%* or so of readers never met nor talk to most of the authors they read.


*statistic is completely made up, which probably makes it accurate enough
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:45 AM   #5
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For me it's long (pages long) chunks of exposition data. I read to read about the characters, not to read about how the land is formed etc. I had trouble with "The Valley of Horses" for that very reason. I wanted to read about Ayla not page after page of exposition.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:55 AM   #6
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For some reason I enjoyed the chapters/passages in The Grapes of Wrath...they seemed to enhance the story and were an integral part of it I think.....though for the most part I ageee with you crich....

I guess the same crit had been aimed at Mitchener but I've never really read his work.
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Old 07-10-2013, 10:38 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VydorScope View Post
Both of these points are a personal dislike of the PERSON, not the book. So not sure that applies here. 99.9999999999999999999998%* or so of readers never met nor talk to most of the authors they read.


*statistic is completely made up, which probably makes it accurate enough

However, for me, they are still reasons for chucking the book - or not picking it up in the first place.

That's one reader less, which is absolutely nothing in the scheme of things.



Don
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:40 PM   #8
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All of my books are DRM-free (or can be made so) and I always bookmark typos for later correction because I re-read books and that stuff drives me crazy. I find that if I hit 10 bookmarks and am not absolutely loving the story, I bail.

I used to be one of these people who finished every book I started. But I have so many really, really good books on my TBR list that I simply don't have time for mediocrity. Life is too short to slog through books I am not enjoying. So the typo thing is one reason, but I find that I am more capricious now than I used to be, and I'll bail on a book if I just don't feel like reading it anymore too
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Old 07-10-2013, 02:58 PM   #9
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Gravity.
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Old 07-10-2013, 03:31 PM   #10
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Gravity.
Levity .

Interesting post. I rarely give up on a book, but if I do it will be within the first 50 pages. And my sole reason to give up is for bad writing (plot, characterisation, dialogue). I can put up with poor edits and lengthy explanations, as long as they are well written!
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Old 07-10-2013, 04:03 PM   #11
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I've walked away from (well, deleted from ereader) books with bad editing, but very rarely. Usually, I read the blurb and sample for an unknown author, and it's rare that those are edited well enough not to bother me but the rest of the book isn't. I've removed books with incoherent rambling plots, too. And books obviously written for a specific in-crowd that's not me.

I've stopped reading romance books when they hit themes I abhor. (Some types of "one true love only" stories bother me, including the ones that imply that everyone has a single soulmate and all other approaches to relationships are wrong.) I've given up on books when I realized I despised one or more of the main characters, or when I realized I really didn't care what happened to them.

I imagine some people give up on romance books when they find more smut than they want to read; I've dropped romance books when I realized it was going to be a chaste, maybe-they'll-kiss-someday story. Not that I don't read those, and enjoy them, but if I was expecting a different kind of story when I started, or I think the story's weak without any physical side to the romance, I'll drop it.

So: mostly story themes, rather than specific triggers. If it's not the kind of story I want to read, I'll read a few chapters to find out if it keeps my interest anyway; if not, I have a long TBR list of things I Know I'll enjoy. Reading is a joy to me; I'm not going to use it to punish myself if I misunderstood the book's labeling.
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Old 07-10-2013, 04:04 PM   #12
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Poor writing, which is not quite the same as poor editing. I've read books by really good writers that had mistakes that would have been caught by better editing and proofing. I can usually deal with those because they are generally not too numerous, and the overall impression of the writing is good.

What will make me put a book down is a lack of writing skills. Poor grammar, poor spelling, and do not even get me started on comma usage.

But then, anyone who was around for the "Ugly Truth" series of threads probably already knows how I feel about bad writing.
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Old 07-10-2013, 06:17 PM   #13
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Hmm, I think I've only ever put down two books.

One was James Joyce's "Finnegans Wake," attempted to read for pleasure and I guess I'm not masochistic enough.

The other was a vanity press fantasy novel a friend of a friend wrote. The degree of poor writing made my head hurt after the first two chapters.
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Old 07-11-2013, 12:49 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Dr. Drib View Post
See here for a full description of what reasons readers will give for chucking the book aside. Or, if the book is really bad, to just toss the ereader in the trash.

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=217375[...]
Ah, yes, I've carefully book marked that thread, along with it's co-conspirator. I'm now carefully planning a book that avoids every red flag and hits every green light, I'm absolutely certain it's going to be a best seller. But, shush, don't spread it around or everyone one will be doing it.

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Old 07-11-2013, 01:02 AM   #15
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The first book I remember putting down unfinished was "Treasure Island" by Robert Louis Stevenson. It's so long ago that I couldn't tell you exactly what it was that didn't work for me. I'm one of those that generally try to finish whatever I start - I even managed the Bible, though I failed with the Koran. I'm am getting less inclined to finish now, but books that I put down are few are far between. It's rarely anything specific. The most common symptom is finding myself having to go back re-read previous pages or paragraphs, not because I didn't understand them the first time, but because my mind got so bored that it wandered off to think about other things that it has already forgotten what came before.
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