Author Topic: What is a "Good" Book?  (Read 7551 times)  

Online GeneDoucette

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #75 on: June 18, 2017, 08:39:25 AM »
Yes, people are on here every day trying to find out HOW they can write a bestseller, HOW they can 'Game' the system into writing a bestseller. It's sad.

Those that are saying ' just write more interesting books' are being ignored, or put on the back shelf because - it's either too hard, or not interesting enough to do it the' right' way.

There's a massive industry out there feeding off the writers obsession with writing bestsellers, but guess what. Those bestsellers are only successful because the writer wrote their own book. I wrote a bestseller, I haven't got a clue how I did it, or what I did right or wrong. I've tried to analyse it, but it comes down to one thing. The book was interesting.

It was badly written (it was my first book) it wasn't edited (it was written and published in 30 days) It was full of mistakes (some funny, others not so) and it sold thousands. I never read a book or a post anywhere about how to write a book. I just did it. I wish I could keep on doing it, but since then I've been through the mill with editors, proofreaders, critics, beta readers, soul searching, blog reading, articles on 'how to', and endless posts on KBoards. Now, my writing is much better, my back story is good, my pace is great, my characters are likeable and the plots are exciting. The SF is innovative and original and the books don't sell as well. Go figure.

Sometimes, I look back and think 'maybe, I should just write like I did on the first book. Not giving a sh&t about the structure, prose or the technical aspects. A real 'seat-of-the-pants' book that just writes itself without any thought about being a bestseller or even a 'good' book. Maybe I will, tomorrow. :D

I think there is some misunderstanding about what we're all doing here on KBoards, sometimes. The problem as I see it is "write a good book" isn't actionable in the same way as "here is some marketing advice." Most of the discussion here assumes a book has been written, and now the author needs to work on getting it in front of as many people as possible. We don't discuss tips on writing very much because honestly, 'write a good book' is also deeply subjective and difficult to teach.

I ignore essentially all the writing advice here, but I pay attention to the marketing advice. I think most people here do the same.

Offline Al Stevens

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #76 on: June 18, 2017, 09:11:01 AM »
I remember the gatekeeper arguments from a few years back. "Steinbeck couldn't get published today," and so on. Yes he could. He'd do what many of us are doing.

Are we looking for a formula or recipe to apply in whipping up a good book? Doesn't exist. Rules? Read some John Updike.

There are three ways to market a good book. None of them work.

Offline TobiasRoote

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #77 on: June 18, 2017, 09:17:59 AM »

I ignore essentially all the writing advice here, but I pay attention to the marketing advice. I think most people here do the same.

The thing about marketing is, it's all about getting and keeping an 'edge'. If one person does it, it works, they tell another, it works. They tell twenty people, it works (some of the time). The one's it works for tell a hundred people, it works for a few. Then it no longer works.

Marketing isn't a science, nor is it a mass-market 'thingie' - it's about being different and standing out. If you're reading about a marketing technique here on KBoards, so are twenty thousand others. Guess what's going to happen. It's suddenly going to stop working so well (or, at all) because the effect is over-used.

When I launched my book I used 20 Facebook groups directed towards new releases, mainly SF.  That was all. It must have worked. I've tried it countless times since - Nada.

If you have a technique and it's working for you - don't shout about it on here. :D


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Offline Dpock

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #78 on: June 18, 2017, 09:28:01 AM »


If you have a technique and it's working for you - don't shout about it on here. :D

I hear stream of consciousness 600-page dystopian epics using a single paragraph are the next big thing, so stop whatever you're doing and focus there, especially all you romance writers.

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Offline Shelley K

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #79 on: June 18, 2017, 09:54:25 AM »

Market research isn't about gaming the system, it's about seeing how readers respond to popular books and seeing what you can learn from that.

That there.

Offline TobiasRoote

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #80 on: June 18, 2017, 09:58:20 AM »
That there.

If it works for you keep doing it. I'm not going to argue the point :D


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Offline Shelley K

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #81 on: June 18, 2017, 10:08:27 AM »
If it works for you keep doing it. I'm not going to argue the point :D

I am. ;)

Seriously though, you're talking about marketing techniques. That's not the same thing as market research. The difference isn't even apples and oranges, it's apples and tennis shoes.

Offline Jan Hurst-Nicholson

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #82 on: June 18, 2017, 11:04:53 AM »


What are the things?
Pacing - if you can't put it down until it's done.


This isn't true for me. The more I'm enjoying the story the more likely I am to take my time and savour it  ;).  (I can make a bar of chocolate last a week by eating one square after lunch and one square after supper every day  ::))

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Offline Jan Hurst-Nicholson

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #83 on: June 18, 2017, 11:18:36 AM »

There's a massive industry out there feeding off the writers obsession with writing bestsellers, but guess what. Those bestsellers are only successful because the writer wrote their own book. I wrote a bestseller, I haven't got a clue how I did it, or what I did right or wrong. I've tried to analyse it, but it comes down to one thing. The book was interesting.

It was badly written (it was my first book) it wasn't edited (it was written and published in 30 days) It was full of mistakes (some funny, others not so) and it sold thousands. I never read a book or a post anywhere about how to write a book. I just did it. I wish I could keep on doing it, but since then I've been through the mill with editors, proofreaders, critics, beta readers, soul searching, blog reading, articles on 'how to', and endless posts on KBoards. Now, my writing is much better, my back story is good, my pace is great, my characters are likeable and the plots are exciting. The SF is innovative and original and the books don't sell as well. Go figure.


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Offline anniejocoby

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #84 on: June 18, 2017, 11:48:43 AM »
Yes, people are on here every day trying to find out HOW they can write a bestseller, HOW they can 'Game' the system into writing a bestseller. It's sad.

Those that are saying ' just write more interesting books' are being ignored, or put on the back shelf because - it's either too hard, or not interesting enough to do it the' right' way.

There's a massive industry out there feeding off the writers obsession with writing bestsellers, but guess what. Those bestsellers are only successful because the writer wrote their own book. I wrote a bestseller, I haven't got a clue how I did it, or what I did right or wrong. I've tried to analyse it, but it comes down to one thing. The book was interesting.

It was badly written (it was my first book) it wasn't edited (it was written and published in 30 days) It was full of mistakes (some funny, others not so) and it sold thousands. I never read a book or a post anywhere about how to write a book. I just did it. I wish I could keep on doing it, but since then I've been through the mill with editors, proofreaders, critics, beta readers, soul searching, blog reading, articles on 'how to', and endless posts on KBoards. Now, my writing is much better, my back story is good, my pace is great, my characters are likeable and the plots are exciting. The SF is innovative and original and the books don't sell as well. Go figure.

Sometimes, I look back and think 'maybe, I should just write like I did on the first book. Not giving a sh&t about the structure, prose or the technical aspects. A real 'seat-of-the-pants' book that just writes itself without any thought about being a bestseller or even a 'good' book. Maybe I will, tomorrow. :D


Yeah, I kinda feel you there. My first two series in romance were the only ones that really sold well, and I didn't know what the hell I was doing with either of them. Seriously. Then I wrote my third series, and I didn't do much analysis of bestsellers for that one, either, and it tanked. So, I figured I should do some market research. Did that, wrote my fourth series, consciously trying to "imitate" bestsellers, and it tanked, too. I came to realize that there's no "imitating" bestsellers - your book either has that "it" factor or it doesn't. I guess my first two series had the "it" factor, at least a little of the "it" factor, and the other three didn't. Why the other three didn't, I have no clue. There just wasn't the resonance that the first two series had.

That said, I don't think that market research is "gaming the system." It's smart to do that. The problem becomes how do you do that without becoming derivative? If you consciously try to imitate, your book will just be a pale imitation of x,y and z. But if you write something without knowing the tropes, you get into trouble there, too. For instance, I think that, with my third series, the first one that "failed," I do think that I got into trouble because I wrote a beta male paired with an alpha female. I knew that the tropes were the opposite of that, but I wanted to be "different," and, well, that cost me. I think.

Then again, who knows?

I read some bestsellers and find myself wanting to throw the book across the room (For me, FSOG was like that. Just.no. But, a lot of people love it, obviously). I just can't figure out the appeal. Others, such as "The Da Vinci Code," people want to criticize that one, but I loved it. I guess a lot of people think that that book is crap, but the puzzles and the history and all of that, combined with the insane pace - loved it. I didn't much care that it was crappy writing. In fact, I never thought that the writing was crap, because I was so into the story.

"Twilight" is the other one that gets criticized, and, for me, it was somewhere between FSOG, which I hated with the passion of a thousand suns, and "The Da Vinci Code." I liked "Twilight," read all the books in the series, but it took me awhile to get through the first book. That said, I read all the books, so I must have liked them, but they didn't really stay with me that much. I think that I could read "Twilight" again, today, and it would be like reading it for the first time, because it wasn't memorable for me the first time. But I didn't hate it. I did like it enough to continue. So...yeah.

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #85 on: June 18, 2017, 12:01:48 PM »
The thing about marketing is, it's all about getting and keeping an 'edge'. If one person does it, it works, they tell another, it works. They tell twenty people, it works (some of the time). The one's it works for tell a hundred people, it works for a few. Then it no longer works.

Marketing isn't a science, nor is it a mass-market 'thingie' - it's about being different and standing out. If you're reading about a marketing technique here on KBoards, so are twenty thousand others. Guess what's going to happen. It's suddenly going to stop working so well (or, at all) because the effect is over-used.

When I launched my book I used 20 Facebook groups directed towards new releases, mainly SF.  That was all. It must have worked. I've tried it countless times since - Nada.

If you have a technique and it's working for you - don't shout about it on here. :D

this is a competitive, zero-sum approach to marketing that I don't agree with at all.

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #86 on: June 18, 2017, 12:18:03 PM »
I am not a best seller nor a highly successful author. In fact, I'm pretty new at all this...but I do read.  So, here's my take on the appeal of best sellers that may not seem wonderful to many of us.

I think it's like pizza...whatever genre you're researching.  The readers like it, they don't get bored with it...they can try something a little different, but it's still pizza.  The convenience factor is huge and it's always "okay" and what you expect.  Rarely is pizza truly awful because hey, it's still pizza.

However, occasionally you find yourself with something truly wonderful. The crust is light and baked to perfection.  The sauce is not too spicy, the ingredients fresh, the cheese slightly tangy...and you think this is one of the best pizzas I've ever eaten!  You eat all the pizza you can find until you realize there is no more like it.  The source has dried up and you've gone through all that was available.

So, you remember it fondly and continue picking up the take out, eating the delivery and even grabbing some in the frozen food aisle.  it's still pizza, right?  And you still like it.  Maybe you think fondly about the wonderful slice and check back to see if there's anything more available, but you're not going to give up pizza.  I mean, it's pizza! :)

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Offline Dan C. Rinnert

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #87 on: June 18, 2017, 01:07:14 PM »
That's where I think you have to read the reviews and try to pluck out what's working for the readers who do enjoy it. It's a challenge, but I guarantee that those writers are doing something well.

Even doing that, even knowing what readers are enjoying, doesn't necessarily help.  For example, I looked at reviews of my bestselling book (which is not a bestseller, only my bestseller) to see what readers enjoyed about it and also studied critical comments as to what they didn't enjoy.  I incorporated what I had learned into writing another book, trying to focus on what readers enjoyed and fix or eliminate the things that they didn't.  I apparently failed because the resulting book is in strong competition to become my worst seller.

And . . .  My bestselling book outsells my better written, planned and plotted book with characters that actually experience some degree of growth from the beginning to the end.

Granted, even knowing what readers want and buy isn't going to guarantee you can replicate it, but one would hope that knowing and incorporating that knowledge into your books would, at the very least, increase sales for those books as compared to other books where you didn't do that.
       
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Offline Laran Mithras

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #88 on: June 18, 2017, 01:23:25 PM »
 ;D

The responses confirm sort of what I've said in many threads - don't listen to the rhetoric, write the story in your heart. If not today, tomorrow it might be a great book.

I think Lorri nails the "bestseller" lists overall: it's pizza to the readers.


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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #89 on: June 18, 2017, 03:08:47 PM »
Even doing that, even knowing what readers are enjoying, doesn't necessarily help.  For example, I looked at reviews of my bestselling book (which is not a bestseller, only my bestseller) to see what readers enjoyed about it and also studied critical comments as to what they didn't enjoy.  I incorporated what I had learned into writing another book, trying to focus on what readers enjoyed and fix or eliminate the things that they didn't.  I apparently failed because the resulting book is in strong competition to become my worst seller.

Oh, I meant reading reviews for "good" books by other people. I don't think studying your own reviews is nearly as likely to be helpful--especially if you haven't yet found the audience you're after.

Either way, it's a tricky thing to do. You're not necessarily reading for explicit comments from readers so much as trying to infer what actually bothered them, subconsciously. It's hard. It's also just one step, one tool, of many. I can't begin to speculate whether that feedback you incorporated is what caused your book to founder.

I don't know if I should be, but I'm flabbergasted by the broad pushback against any kind of systematization of writing a "good" book. Whether it's because you think it's a vain hope, or something that shouldn't be attempted even if it's possible, I don't see how you can work in this field under that system of belief. Writing out of passion, sure. Everybody's entitled to do that. To me, though, professionalism requires process. You might as well be buying lottery tickets if you don't believe success is replicable.

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #90 on: June 18, 2017, 03:45:14 PM »
I think this topic is difficult to discuss because people can become hyper-defensive, and it's all too easy to come off as pretentious and snobbish - not to mention, my books may be just as "not good" as anyone else's. So who am I to even comment? The following is stuff that sours my reading experience, and if it appears in the first few pages, I'm probably done - dnf.


1. Action without context. I'm usually dnf by the middle of page one. Same goes for sex. I have no reason to care what happens, so why keep reading?
2. Random adjectives without literary meaning. If an adjective has no bearing on character, story, setting or mood, or is so descriptively broad as to be meaningless, such as "the MC's hair is brown", then I'm going to make an assumption that the most basic elements of craft have been ignored, so - dnf.
3. Author cleverness. Whether it is an attempt at literary depth, artistic flair or purple prose, if the only purpose for the passage is to let me know how amazingly amazing the author is - I'm all done. I'm not talking about character voice, they can say anything - as long as they are consistent.
4. Editorializing. A close cousin to cleverness, also heard in author voice; this is were the author over-shares their opinion about everything under the sun, often couched in long winded metaphors, obscure references and tales of youth.
5. Tales of youth - backstory dumps. When the author, rather than allowing us to discover whatever the character's issues are through narrative, shares significant character history through anecdote, whether it be an awful childhood, warrior training or the loss of someone close - and then proceeds to walk us through the resulting emotional baggage. This may very well be the MC's primary motivation for the whole book, and it's been reduced to a couple of paragraphs? (Way to build empathy.)
6. Stereotypical and played out characters. The list is pretty long. To be clear, I don't really mind if it turns out later on that a character is one of these tropes, I just don't want to know it on page one. Ruins the mystery.
7. World building info-dumps. This happens a lot with fantasy. I don't care if it's about politics, the origins of magic or religion, geology or genealogy, a secret grimoire or anything else, they read like a bad prologue to me, so - skip. If it's really that cool and that essential to the narrative...put it in the story, as part of the story.
8. Research Info-dumps. This is where the writer clearly researched something to death and feels compelled to share, even though it will never be mentioned or referenced again.
9. Author-splaining. This is where the writer has "shown" us a situation that clearly illustrates the character's emotions, but then goes on to explain them to us as if we're brain dead.
10. Campfire voice. I'm not a fan. These books often include numbers 3, 4, 5 and 9 above. This voice distances me from the characters and story.
11. Blog voice. The Martian was cool, but now it's been done. This one will get a dnf after the first sentence. Novels are not blogs and they're not forums.
12. Lazy writing. Lots of this list qualifies, and there are many more examples; I'm sure we all have our own pet peeves (the one I loathe the most is when characters change personalities to fit the plot).
13. First person author voice. If the book is written in first person, especially present tense - I don't want to hear anything from the author. I want character voice - exclusively.

A good book connects us with the author, and engages us. Anything that creates space between reader and author is, generally speaking, bad. This list creates space for me, but by removing the cliches and jibber-jabber, while finding new and creative ways to introduce the essential information into the narrative - in an emotional and engaging way - can improve one's chances of writing a better book. We can't keep copying the classics or the old ways indefinitely. Then again, at some point in your career, most writing advice becomes worthless because there are so many exceptions (even to this list).

I only have 2 rules:

1. Give the reader a reason to give a [crap].
2. If it sounds like writing, rewrite it - Elmore Leonard

I find both of them really really tough.

Hopefully, this is helpful to someone.

___

Oh, I meant reading reviews for "good" books by other people.

I read one star reviews of popular books in lots of genres. The one-stars on Goodreads are often lengthy and well articulated. All of the stuff they rail against, I try not to do.   :)
« Last Edit: June 18, 2017, 03:57:01 PM by P.J. Post »

Offline BellaJames

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #91 on: June 18, 2017, 04:04:08 PM »

 You might as well be buying lottery tickets if you don't believe success is replicable.

This.

I have read so many success stories of authors who read a bunch of bestsellers in their chosen sub-genre, studied them and then wrote something similar. Then there are new authors who wrote the book in their heart and had success. Both authors did the same thing, they wrote a book that readers enjoyed reading. To me it's all about engaging and entertaining people.
 
There are all sorts of different reasons why an individual would say 'that's a good book'. When a bunch of people are all saying the same thing, then I think it's worth paying attention.

I remember being fascinated by Jasinda Wilders story of how they studied the top selling books in their genre and sat and wrote a bunch of books. They got themselves out of a serious financial situation.

Looking at reviews for books similar to yours, paying attention to what the readers are saying that they like and interacting with your readers. There are authors doing all that and finding their own success. They keep giving readers what they want.

I honestly think some authors find it a little difficult to stand back and look at the good and bad feedback in a positive way. Like P.J. Post just said, some 1 star reviews can be very interesting to read. Some contain golden nuggets about what is not working and what could be improved. Look at the discussions in the comments section and you will see some good points raised.

Don't read the 1 star reviews for your book if it's going to offend you and halt your writing. Read some critical reviews of authors in your sub-genre. There are three or four top reviewers on Goodreads who read romance and I agree with many of their 1 star reviews.

« Last Edit: June 18, 2017, 04:11:53 PM by BellaJames »

Offline Dpock

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #92 on: June 18, 2017, 05:13:03 PM »

Looking at reviews for books similar to yours



I wish I had more faith in Amazon reviews. In some genres they seem totally gamed. Titles with a 100 five-star reviews on the day of publication (and not ARCs, which is another subject)? And they say the same thing? Something stinks there.

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #93 on: June 18, 2017, 05:38:11 PM »
The danger of relying on reviews for useful feedback is that only a very small fraction of readers bother to write a review and you have no idea if this a representative sample.

But I do think that writers, over time, can learn to objectively assess their work and know whether it is 'good' or not.

Offline Perry Constantine

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #94 on: June 18, 2017, 05:47:39 PM »
The danger of relying on reviews for useful feedback is that only a very small fraction of readers bother to write a review and you have no idea if this a representative sample.

True, you have no idea if it's a representative sample. But if you get several reviews in a row saying that your characterization needs work or your plots are muddled, then that's probably something to take a second look at.

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #95 on: June 18, 2017, 05:58:46 PM »
True, you have no idea if it's a representative sample. But if you get several reviews in a row saying that your characterization needs work or your plots are muddled, then that's probably something to take a second look at.

Good point, but glad I have yet to experience that particular feedback :)

Offline Captain Cranky

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #96 on: June 18, 2017, 05:58:55 PM »
I don't know if I should be, but I'm flabbergasted by the broad pushback against any kind of systematization of writing a "good" book. Whether it's because you think it's a vain hope, or something that shouldn't be attempted even if it's possible, I don't see how you can work in this field under that system of belief. Writing out of passion, sure. Everybody's entitled to do that. To me, though, professionalism requires process. You might as well be buying lottery tickets if you don't believe success is replicable.

I don't want to derail the thread or get into a debate on 'natural talent' (so I'll try to brief), but I can't help thinking that part of any 'pushback on systematisation' may be down to some people having internalised the process of building and utilising certain skill-sets, and therefore don't know how they do something, they just do.

Stephen King is probably a famous example of this. When you're devouring books and writing at a young age, or anything else which later in life can be transferred over to the business of writing, you're likely to be unconsciously internalising processes like structure, plotting, pacing etc. Later in life it is easy to attribute that as 'just write a good book' because doing so has become something that feels intuitive to that person. So they 'write what they feel.'

I liken it to driving a car in some ways. When I first started driving, I was conscious of everything. Check my mirrors, seat belt, start the ignition, put the car into gear, release the handbrake etc. But after a long time of doing it, I rarely even think about it anymore. The process feels intuitive to me. I instinctively know how much pressure to apply to the brakes and accelerator, how to turn the wheel in just the right way to go in the direction I want, when I can take a risk pulling into heavy/fast moving traffic and knowing how quickly my car can accelerate to catch up with the flow and not get in the way. Because I had a structure for learning how to drive, and I've internalised the process, I now get to enjoy the scenery and drive wherever I feel like it.

Some people have internalised the process of knowing when to accelerate or slow something down in their book, how to steer things to go in the direction they want early on. Some haven't, and find it useful to dissect bestsellers, so they can find a process for themselves. Some of us like to 'feel' our way through things, others like to analyse. I imagine a lot of us fall somewhere in between-we have already acquired some skill-sets, and need to break down others to learn them.

I don't know that there's any right or wrong way to learn to write a 'good book' or a book that sells, only that we should do it in whatever way makes sense to us. If it works, great. If not, back to the drawing board, try a different process.

Online Jena H

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #97 on: June 18, 2017, 06:04:06 PM »
True, you have no idea if it's a representative sample. But if you get several reviews in a row saying that your characterization needs work or your plots are muddled, then that's probably something to take a second look at.

Thing is, most 'average' readers (i.e., those who aren't writers) don't always go into characterization or muddle plots or anything specific like that.  They may say "I don't like the FMC's friend," or "the coffee-shop story didn't make sense."  They generally mention characters and storylines in general, and not really in enough detail that the writer can learn something from it.  (When I write a review, I do try to be specific, and not just say "I didn't like it' or "I loved this story.")
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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #98 on: June 18, 2017, 06:10:08 PM »
I don't want to derail the thread or get into a debate on 'natural talent' (so I'll try to brief), but I can't help thinking that part of any 'pushback on systematisation' may be down to some people having internalised the process of building and utilising certain skill-sets, and therefore don't know how they do something, they just do.

Stephen King is probably a famous example of this. When you're devouring books and writing at a young age, or anything else which later in life can be transferred over to the business of writing, you're likely to be unconsciously internalising processes like structure, plotting, pacing etc. Later in life it is easy to attribute that as 'just write a good book' because doing so has become something that feels intuitive to that person. So they 'write what they feel.'

I liken it to driving a car in some ways. When I first started driving, I was conscious of everything. Check my mirrors, seat belt, start the ignition, put the car into gear, release the handbrake etc. But after a long time of doing it, I rarely even think about it anymore. The process feels intuitive to me. I instinctively know how much pressure to apply to the brakes and accelerator, how to turn the wheel in just the right way to go in the direction I want, when I can take a risk pulling into heavy/fast moving traffic and knowing how quickly my car can accelerate to catch up with the flow and not get in the way. Because I had a structure for learning how to drive, and I've internalised the process, I now get to enjoy the scenery and drive wherever I feel like it.

Some people have internalised the process of knowing when to accelerate or slow something down in their book, how to steer things to go in the direction they want early on. Some haven't, and find it useful to dissect bestsellers, so they can find a process for themselves. Some of us like to 'feel' our way through things, others like to analyse. I imagine a lot of us fall somewhere in between-we have already acquired some skill-sets, and need to break down others to learn them.

I don't know that there's any right or wrong way to learn to write a 'good book' or a book that sells, only that we should do it in whatever way makes sense to us. If it works, great. If not, back to the drawing board, try a different process.

I was very fortunate that my dad was an English teacher and my mom a teacher and librarian.  We always had a ton of books and spent a lot of time reading.  You do pick things up, often without even realizing it.  I would say the same about watching classic old movies.  They're classic for a reason...and a lot of great ideas there! :)

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Offline Captain Cranky

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Re: What is a "Good" Book?
« Reply #99 on: June 18, 2017, 06:20:24 PM »
I was very fortunate that my dad was an English teacher and my mom a teacher and librarian.  We always had a ton of books and spent a lot of time reading.  You do pick things up, often without even realizing it.  I would say the same about watching classic old movies.  They're classic for a reason...and a lot of great ideas there! :)

Exactly  :) I've discovered through learning about different ways to write books, that there are some things I seem to already know how to do. But I didn't pop out of my mother's uterus knowing how to do it, I read a lot of fiction for pleasure from a young age, something my dad encouraged because he's always been a heavy scifi/fantasy reader. I have no doubt the combination of my father's reading habits and being young helped me absorb certain things about 'good books'. But there are other aspects to writing and marketing I don't understand or do well, so I analyse what others are doing in an attempt to learn, to find a way to do it for myself.