Sunday, January 11, 2009

Addict Your Reader

There's more to a great book than good writing, real characters and a cool plot. A great book will reel you in and when it's over, you'll be desperate for more.

Are you writing a book, non-fiction or fiction?

Use your final scene in the story to create a sense of fulfillment in your reader. Take them on an emotional rollercoaster with your writing and then leave them on a high.

Addict them.

First lines, first pages, will get me to pick up a book and read it. The thrill of the story and how the ending makes me feel will decide whether that author gets read again.

For example, I'd never read Linda Howard before a few years ago. One night I picked up Cry No More, which I'd gotten from the library. I couldn't put it down.

Howard engaged me, made me cry and worry and then at the end gave me such an euphoria that I knew I had to read something by her again.

It was intense, and that addicted me.

Which books have done this for you? Which author do you read without ever checking out the plot, because you know the author will leave you satisfied?

20 comments:

Kristen Painter said...

Boy, that's a tough one. I'm a picking reader. I have picked up books by favorite authors only to be disappointed in them. I really go book by book.

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jessica -

Karen Kingsbury, Lisa Samson, Frank Peretti, and others all leave me wanting more. Right now, I'm trying to sample a wide range of Christian authors and genres.

Every book has its own flavor. Some are exciting, others more literary, and others sweet romances.

I love a book where I can't figure out the ending. Somehow it ruins it for me if the ending is predictable.

Blessings,
Susan :)

anita said...

I really don't have a favorite author persay. I'm an ecclectic reader. It just depends on what I'm writing, or happen to be hungry for, as to what I'll reach for to read.

But I did really enjoy THE THIRTEENTH TALE by Diane Setterfield, and will probably pick up her next book if for no other reason than just to savor some more of her amazingly beautiful prose. :-)

Sarah said...

I guess you know I've really gotten into Stephenie Meyers books as of late, but before that I never really followed any single author. I usually read the back of the book and decide if the story sounds interesting before I even look at the author on the front.

Like Anita, I really enjoyed The Thirteenth Tale. I'm looking forward to reading more of Diane Setterfield in the future.

Terri Tiffany said...

I have a few authors I absolutely adore --but do you think my brain is working now and I am too lazy to go look at a book! But I know what you mean--if I get addicted to one of the author's books, I can't wait to read the next and when one falls flat, I feel so disappointed!

Jessica said...

Hey Kristen,
No, I hear you on that. With Howard, I loved that particular book was so amazing to me, and so I picked up other books of her. Some were great, others were just normal. I didn't used to be a picky reader in school but maybe now that we have less time we're more picky? What do you think?

Jessica said...

Hi Susan,
Very true. Peretti was one where I read one and was like, Man, I have to read more.
Great authors. A twisty ending is always fun, as long as it makes sense. Even though a romance is predictable, it can still be hooky. But it takes work. Suspense is easier, imo, to surprise the reader.
Peretti does a good job with that.

Jessica said...

Anita,
I would too. Not only did I love her writing (and savored it!) but I flew through that book. I just had to know what would happen next. If you hear of her writing another, let me know.

Jessica said...

That's interesting Sarah. So the author doesn't affect your choice? I guess that's why the blurb is so important.
If I pick up a book at the library by someone I've never read, and LOVE it, I most definitely will gorge myself on their books. I'll go through everyone I can find.

Jessica said...

Me too Terri.
There's on Christian romance novelist that I absolutely adored, but lately she hasn't written any romances and the books she did write, well, I just couldn't get into them. I was disappointed too.

Angie Ledbetter said...

My reading's all over the place. For poetry, I'll lap up anything Billy Collins or Natasha Tretheway write. Fiction...could be anything. Love Sue Kidd Monk, Wally Lamb, Dorothy Allison, Rebecca Wells...it's the characters that do it for me. CONGRATS ON FINISHING TBBR!!!

Jessica said...

Hey Angie,
Thanks for the congrats. :-)
I've heard a lot about Kidd and Lamb. May have to check them out. :-)

Jennifer Hudson Taylor said...

Before I read Christian fiction, my authors were Julie Garwood, Jude Deveraux, Judith McNaught, and Catherine Coulter. Now they are all writing different things and I mostly read Christian fiction.

Lately, I've thorough enjoyed M.L. Tyndall, Julie Lessman and Tamera Alexander.

Jessica said...

Hi Jennifer,
I discovered Julie Garwood and loved her, but now I mostly read Christian fiction too. Although I haven't had the privilege of reading Tyndall or Alexander, I have read both of Lessman's books and they were great. I flew through them.
Thanks for stopping by!

Jen and Kev said...

Is anyone out there besides me addicted to Jan Karon? I also love Max Lucado and Lori Wick. I think most of you on this blog are WAY younger than me, but thanks for letting me feel young by being here!
Jen
P.S. Way to go, Jessica! I am so proud of you for finishing!

Jessica said...

Hey Jen,
I've heard so much about that author! I really need to read the series.
And LOL I don't think we're way younger than you. Well, some of us. But some are older. Susan may be around your age, I'm guessing.
Thanks for stopping by. :-)

Debra E Marvin said...

A little late here but I was happy to see The Thirteenth Tale on the list. I could not put that book down and I was transported into that world. Isn't that the allure of reading!

I am also stuck on the J A Jance mysteries with Joann Brady as the protagonist and Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series. Definitely not Christian fiction and dictionary sized books, but I must find out what happens next to Jamie and Claire.

Jessica said...

LOL
Dictionary-sized books! That's funny.
I've heard of the Outlander series and am interested in trying them out.
I don't read all Christian fiction, btw. :-) There's lots of great books out there that are far from Christian, but they still have great themes and morals to learn from.
Thanks for stopping by my blog!

Kathryn Magendie said...

Hmmm -- I wish Donna Tartt would write another book - but more like her second (which most people liked her first best - not me, I liked "The Little Friend" better)

Gail Godwin
AM Homes
Ron Rash
Tommy Hayes

there are more - more always more!

Jessica said...

You know, I've never heard of her. I'll have to keep an eye out.
Thanks for stopping by my blog, Kathryn.
I agree! The world of great authors is so huge that I regret not having time to read them all!