July 27, 2012 at 7:54 pm

Friday Poll; Second (Writer) Chances

I’ve come to the conclusion that being published has allowed me to see the best and worst in people. I’ve been the grateful subject of tremendous support, endless encouragement, and appreciation from all over the world. I’ve had the privilege of talking to, learning from, and befriending many talented people (published authors and otherwise) and have seen the writing community rally around people in need due to all kinds of circumstances.

On the other hand, I’ve seen reviewers be downright mean, witnessed high school-esque backstabbing, and rumor-mongering that would make a Mean Girl proud.

And then there are things I just don’t get. Like people who have NEVER liked an author’s work but keep reading and reviewing.

Now, OF COURSE these people have a right to read and review what they want. They can hate every one of an author’s books and keep reading and reviewing if they want.

I guess I just don’t get it. I’m SO BUSY. I’m lucky if I get to read all the books I’m DYING to read. So if I haven’t liked someone’s work in the past, especially if I’ve tried more than one of their books, I just don’t bother reading the others. Not because I think they’re terrible hacks, but because I acknowledge that not every writer is for every reader. Writers have certain styles and specific voices, and there’s just no way every one of us is going to connect with every one of you. Some people want heavy character development and don’t care much about a unique plot. Others want fast-paced action and don’t like characters who navel gaze. Some readers like tons of setting detail. Others find it boring and slow. I can go on Goodreads and look at the books I think are the most brilliant contributions to literature in the last 100 years and still find lots of people who rip on it without reservation.

So I tend to skip titles – even heavily hyped ones – by authors I just don’t connect with.

But that’s just me. And it got me thinking about books and authors and second chances. I can’t help wondering if I’m in the minority, if everyone else gives every author an endless number of chances to win them over. I guess it would be a mixed blessing; awesome that people keep giving your work a try, not so awesome if they start reviews with something like, “I’ve never liked so-and-so’s work, and this one was no exception.”

What about you? How many chances does an author get to win you over before you decide they’re just not for you?

Weigh in with the Friday Poll (and feel free to discuss in the comments)!

<3

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10 thoughts on “Friday Poll; Second (Writer) Chances

  1. Nikki Montgomery says:

    I tend to give an author a second chance. If I didn’t love a book I try and figure out why. Sometimes I find it’s content and sometimes it’s just the style of writing. I do think though that authors can change things from book to book (including how the story is written) so I tend to give a second chance. I can say too though that there have books that I hated and still felt compelled to read for no explainable reasons. I don’t bash books though or authors though since I do realize that what I like or find compelling someone else may not and I don’t want to ruin a book by tainting it with my thoughts on it if that makes sense. Now if I just plain hate it I just don’t talk about it and move on to each their own I think.

  2. Nikki Montgomery says:

    I apparently can’t type or form complete thoughts so I hope that made sense. lol.

    1. MichelleZink says:

      It totally did! I’m the same. I’m much less inclined to take a review seriously if the reviewer says something like, “I don’t like historical fiction [or this author’s work], which is probably why I didn’t like this one.” Or whatever. In fact, I’m more likely to take it seriously if the person says, “I usually LOVE historical fiction [or this author’s work] but had trouble connecting with this one.”
      <3

  3. Ginny says:

    When it come to series books I’m a little different. There are two in particular that I am just so done with but I continue to read even though I swore I was finished. I just have to know how it will end! I can’t even just skim them anymore.

    1. MichelleZink says:

      Series are definitely trickier to abandon. Especially if you’re a bit OCD like me. It’s like, “But… I didn’t FINISH it! I have to finish it!”
      😉

      MZ

  4. Jessica says:

    I give most authors a couple of chances before I give up on them. If I didn’t I would have totally given up on Jodi Picoult because the second book I read by her just angered me so much! I think it’s only fair to give them a second chance.

    By the way I read some of those negative reviews and some were way harsher than they needed to be……

    1. MichelleZink says:

      Harsh reviews always make me sad, regardless of how I feel about the book in question. It just doesn’t seem that hard to convey that a book wasn’t for you because of X, Y & Z, but books are very subjective and someone else may very well enjoy it. One of the kindest review formats I’ve ever seen was a blogger who, when posting a review for books she didn’t like, made a point to link to positive reviews from other bloggers. Sure, you don’t HAVE to go the extra mile. You don’t HAVE to be nice. But I guess the way I look at being nice is; Why NOT?
      <3

  5. Tarkquin says:

    Well, I gave you a second chance. I loved Prophecy Of The Sisters. I didn’t like Guardian Of The Gate as much (It wasn’t bad, but it felt too much like a filler to me). I decided to read Circle Of Fire, and felt it redeemed the second book.

    I really couldn’t say how many disliked books it would take me to stop reading an authors work, as I’ve read few books that I’ve truly hated

    1. MichelleZink says:

      Aw, I’m glad the final book in the trilogy won you over, Tarkquin!
      <3

      MZ

  6. I am a big fan of pushing through books, I feel the need to know what happens. This sometimes backfires and others I end up loving it but one thing I have learned is that just because I LOVE one thing from an author doesn’t mean I will love the next or previous. There has been books I didn’t enjoy but to be honest people I know did and that’s okay because not every book is for everyone right 🙂 I have been known to continue with an author I didn’t fully enjoy just to find out what the heck happens lol

    I am more of a positive person when it comes to reviewing and can’t believe that some people don’t just tear the book apart (bad enough) but they continue onto the author. My theory if you didn’t like it that much that’s fine but no one has the right to rip anyone apart over it. Authors are people too… They have feelings and negative reviews can be constructive but hateful ones are just not needed.

    **End mini rant**

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