In the past few weeks I’ve talked a lot about the books on my “to read” list, and about the genres of YA and Epic Fantasy (here, here, here, here and here) and frequently the conversation in the comments has turned to books that weren’t worth finishing reading.
I, like many readers and other writers, am constantly strapped for time. There’s a lot going on, between being a day-job warrior, a superhero father, a debonaire husband, and a fantastically inspired writer. Amidst all that, I also like to read. But I just don’t have time for books that aren’t delivering something of value to me.
What that value is might be negotiable and variable. Usually it’s some form of enjoyment or entertainment. But I also appreciate the use of beautiful language, engaging plot, interesting characters, and other such accoutrements of fine writing – all of which can be subcomponents of “enjoyment” for my purposes. Then there’s the value of informative qualities, education, experiencing something new, and so on which good writing can also be. Long story short, if a book isn’t doing several of these things for me, I probably don’t have time for it.
So, I thought it might be instructive, as a writer and as a reader, to go over all the books I’ve put down – the books I stopped reading, for whatever reason, and haven’t yet finished reading. Continue reading