The comments on my post “Rotten Tomatoes for Indie books” were both entertaining and informative.
“I never know if my reaction is because I am reading out of my genre comfort zone, or whether a book is as dire as it feels. I often buy, but get no further than one chapter in.”
Nailed it! I dragged myself through some books as well. I even tried once to beta read an Indie book, and I could not make it over the first two chapters. The writing killed my imagination and any good intention I had and finally, I gave in and admitted that I could not do it. “Sorry, I can’t find the time,” I said, instead of telling the truth, “I am sorry, but that’s really bad.”
Blogging politics, somehow I got drawn into it, even though I promised myself I never would. What if I like the person, but not the way they write? Well, that’s a real problem and a predicament.
Reading out of my genre, I have done that as well. Why in the world would I want to read a book about somebody building a treehouse in the woods, if I don’t care about treehouses in the first place?
On the other hand, good writing and a good storyline will make me read out of my genre. I thought I don’t like fantasy books, until I fell in love with the ones we all know so well.
“Trying to read some – most – of the self-published books I have attempted has left me with a bad taste in my head. Or whatever. I became bored with reading. A relative texted an excerpt from “The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy,” that she enjoyed. I had never read that novel- not my usual type of novel to curl up with- but promptly went to the local library to check it out. What a difference a well-written book can make. The thrill is back. Yesterday I went to our local Barnes and Noble and bought a brand new book for myself and my wife.”
Is it a cruel judgment, or an honest one? I don’t think it’s cruel at all, it’s honest indeed. I too felt often boredom while reading self-published books. I dragged myself from chapter to chapter, without any excitement. Reading -and finishing a book- became a chore. I thought I had lost my love for books, but the love came back the moment I read one that had been edited and published by a publishing house.
What I learned now is rather simple. Indie writers love their books; the readers not so much. Some, mostly the writers of self-published books, will say I am cruel and I suppose the truth sometimes is. Perhaps Indie writers have been cruel to us -the readers? I am writing this to let readers know, it’s alright to have a higher standard at times. There is absolutely nothing wrong with it.
I agree with every word. From the depression at the deplorable standard of so many self–published works (and the ritual patting self on back for the effort) to the horrible culture of you scratch and I’ll scratch yours. The standard of most of the work I have read is pretty diabolical. It is a horrible by-product of social media that all of a sudden everyone is a writer or an artist.
WordPress is an Indie book platform, and it is used -and abused- as such and that’s alright, as long as we know that there is a lot of BACKSCRATCHING going on. Book review after book review – one better than the other.Then there are the interviews, what a brilliant idea. One self-published writer interviews the other, and they glorify each other’s self-published books.
The reviews on Amazon and Goodreads are a problem as well. They are delusional and over the top and in most cases (if not all) not honest. If one star is the worst and five stars is the highest rating, it’s pretty self-explaining that most of the 5-star ratings of Indie books are given as a gift -not as a rating.
This is my rating system: