Now that more and more people are participating in National Novel Writing Month, I’m seeing a lot of snarky comments from people; writers and non-writers alike…. such as “well, just don’t write a lame book like [fill in name of a highly successful book]..
Seriously? If a book is highly successful, there must be a reason for it. The author must be doing something right!! So, unless you’ve written, published and sold a book that has sold over a million copies, do you really have the right to judge and criticize?
You may not like the subject matter, or the characters, or the plot, and that’s fine. Your opinion of the book doesn’t mean the book is bad, it just means you didn’t care for it. But it seems like for many people, if they don’t like a book, better not be no body who likes it!! That is what is lame, not the book, but your assessment of it.
I read a lot. I read 5-6 books at a time. I try to go into each book’s story with the idea that I will find something about it I will like. I try to look at it all in a positive light. I read one book series that was very frustrating to me, but I read all 10 books of the series and while I didn’t care for the ending, I did search for and find aspects of the story that I loved. And the fact that this writer has finished and published her book is much more than what I’ve accomplished so far.
The worst, of course, are obscure published authors bashing a well known writer, which to me is just sour grapes and a sign of jealousy.
I think as both writers and readers, we need to go into a book with an open mind and a sense of wonder and a willingness to learn and experience something that might be brand new to us, without judgment or criticism and certainly not bashing it, just because the storyline is not our cup of tea.
Your opinion is only for and about yourself; when you use it to judge someone else’s work, it says more about your attitude than it does about the book. I wish book (and movie) critics could understand that.