Saturday, 24 July 2010

Discussion Point - Lets talk Genres

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On a Saturday’s I normally take part in the Weekly Geeks meme – but I had an epiphany last night and secondly I didn't particularly care for this weeks WG topic, so let’s talk Genres…

My epiphany came after trying to listen to an audio of a book that I have been looking forward to hearing for awhile now yesterday… I am not sure if it was the narrator or just me, but after a few minutes I put it away and reach for the trusty book in the bag and got comfortable to get stuck in – that wasn’t working as well.

As I was in the car I resorted to some other reading material that I had on hand, but the book thing just would not let me go. After a few hours pondering this I realised that this was not really a yesterday thing, it has been coming on for a while.

I am getting bored with a genre that I love.

Shock horror – yup, I did what all good girls do – talk it over with my Mom – yes I really did…

She cut right to the heart of the matter and told me – “Step back from it and try something else, don’t force myself and then end up hating it”.

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I wont mention the genre itself for this discussion as I don’t want to go off tangent with the point here. Some of the clues to my problems are

Find myself getting really picky about things that I would have had no problems with, cast, plotline, depth of story etc…. 

I am a mood reader by nature – and just about anything will and can tickle my fancy. After writing up a review and reading it back – I saw that little things that I used to not have issues with now mushroom into a whole bigger thing that spoils most of the book for me.

Feeling  like I am reading the same thing in every book – only with different characters with different names.

I think this one speaks for itself. As soon as I have finish some books I think  that is exactly like XXXXXXX book. Which is so not the thought I want to have when I have close the last page of a book.

Due to number two – I skip huge chunk of a book and still miss nothing of the story.

I am a info dump sort of reader as I have mentioned before on the blog and when I find myself jumping pages because of sluggish scenes, familiarity or just not invested in those area of the book enough -  I know there is a problem.

Where I use to anticipate a new release, especially by an author that works for me – I now have a MEH attitude to the whole thing.

I am not so keen to follow up on series or new books by authors or even publishers as I am starting to feel disappointed in the offerings  – as I expect so much more from them both. I am also starting to feel very jaded about a genre that I adore and I really want these people to push themselves more...

I am starting to struggle to finish even the easiest of reads.

I am definately a non DNF sort of reader – If I start a book - I will finish it. Some lessons are too ingrained to do anything less. One of the many lessons learned from my father is “ If you have not read it, you do not have a voice” – so I always prided myself on completing my reading material even if I end up not liking it. Because realistically how can I converse about a book in it’s ENTIRETY if I have not read it. But the last two – I barely made it, barely.

Review are starting to matter – Alot

This is the one area that really make me think that I need a change. I read reviews, quite a bit if truth be told. I am not sure how other people view reviews but I a have a system – some reviews I read after I have read the book for the obvious reason, some reviewer I trust - we have the same taste, some reviewers I like their sense of adventure and I like that they take me along on the ride and introduce me to new books.

Then there are reviewer who gives a book low grade and it automatically goes on my list – Yup, because I am funny like that. Then there are still yet other reviewers who sees so much more of a book than I do and I like to  read their insight.

However that said -  I find I am actually starting to cull my buying list and reading list based on what I have read, which is something I have NEVER done before.  Not good.

The Heat

I know some readers put away certain genres during the summer month - It’s summer after all. I am reading less – could my interest perk up once the weather gets cooler…

Bottom Line

I am wise enough to know that these are minor bumps in the big scheme of things - but they are my bumps. I am older, my interests have probably changed, mood might be a factor and then I just might want authors to write something better, something more and opt out of this follow me culture that is rife within the book industry.

I don't want magic, but give me quality, give me characters that follow me home and more importantly I want something that make me take a chance and stretch myself.

Question

Do you know when to call time on a genre?..

What are YOUR clues to know when to step back?

14 Speak To Me:

Silver @ TRR on 24 July 2010 at 13:21 said...

Hi E.H! Interesting post you got here. I've been tired of the vamp books for a long time now, coz it's always the same old, same old. When I can put down a book and find non-fiction books more interesting, that's when I knew it's time to stop reading books along the same line.

Then I stumbled onto JR Ward and we both know my love story with her books. LOL Then I picked up Sherrilyn Kenyon's In Other Worlds and I loved (loved loved loved) her writing. Though her Dark Hunter series are about vamps (I think. Not too sure here), I will go and read them.

I've also encountered books where in the middle of the story, I had the thought that it's a familiar situation, down to the last detail, but because the author's voice was so engrossing, I read on.

I think, basically, for me, it comes down to the way the author wrote the story, her voice and her delivery. Like you, if she can give me a hell of a ride, I don't think I'll be tired of reading her books.

But I guess once you have too much of a genre, you have to take a step back and read other stuff. Too much of something is never good for anybody. *wink*

Silver @ TRR on 24 July 2010 at 13:22 said...

Yay! I'm the first commenter! Never had that happen before (on other people's blog, that is.) :)

Chris on 24 July 2010 at 16:11 said...

Oh, how frustrating! I have definitely been there. It's not a good place to be. I kinda hit that wall for non-m/m UF/PNR - I have books on my shelf to read that I KNOW I will enjoy (Meljean Brook, Larissa Ione, Nalini Singh), but I can't bring myself to start them.

Lea on 24 July 2010 at 16:27 said...

EH:

What a thought provoking well written post. I've gone through so many genre moods during my lifetime that I can't count. lol

What I try and do now is vary the sub-genres I read in romance and have even read a YA book that proved very good. I find if I read the same genre consistently over an extended period it can certainly make for disillusion and occasionally boredom depending on the author of course. There are some who are autobuys who haven't disappointed me yet.

The other books I've found increasingly satisfying are novellas. I find if I can fit in a shorter read with the longer novels it makes for a more rounded reading experience.

Finally, yes, the season certainly does curtail my reading to a certain degree, although I wilt and die in the hot weather and tend to hibernate in the air conditioning, and will often read more to pass those long unbearably hot summer days.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

Blodeuedd on 24 July 2010 at 18:45 said...

I spent one summer reading pretty much only chick-lit, everything the library had to offer that I had not read...after that summer I said ok a need a break from this. But I do read so many at a time so I never feel that I need a rest (if I do not go on a crazy chick-lit binge again ;)

Lol, I know about those low grades, sometimes they make me wanna check it out too

Jude Mason on 24 July 2010 at 19:06 said...

E.H.,

It's been awhile since I posted to your blog, but post really grabbed me. I'm the author at the other end of your issues, but honestly have many of the same troubles. When do I know it's time to write something different, a different genre, a different EVERYTHING? When I open up my latest WIP and walk away.

I adore writing m/m and have been doing it pretty steady for quite some time now. I've worked on paranormal, cops and robbers, vamps, and others, but it's always been m/m.

When I first got published, I wrote a completely different genre. I was known for my femdom stuff and I have a feeling I'll drop the m/m for awhile and move back to it.

Sales. That's a whole nother issue. Being as my hubby was recently forced into retirement, money is something I have to think about a great deal. M/M is still selling, in all the sub-genres, so am I going to be tightening the belts up? I really don't know. Stephen King writes horror and has been doing it forever. Do we get tired of reading him? Does he get tired of writing it? Sigh!

If you come up with any brilliant answers, share, please!

Hugs

Erotic Horizon on 25 July 2010 at 06:45 said...

@Silver..

I have been tired of the vamp books for a long time now myself - but I will agreee that every now and then one really stands head snd shoulder above the pack - but it's to find that gem of a book that is the problem...

I love authors writing style and alway wish for something more - but as you say, read on hoping for a better story, a better ending but most time recently I am left disappointed...

Too much of something is never good for anybody

too true - too true...

Hey I love being first on comments as well - it's the simplty things that gives us so much pleasure **snickers***

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 25 July 2010 at 06:47 said...

@Chris..

You do so know the feeling and the word really is frustrating....

Not only do I have books piling up - but nothing seems to be clicking for me at the moment either...

E.H>

Kris on 25 July 2010 at 06:47 said...

Interesting question.

Like you, EH, I am a mood reader so whenever I'm feeling the stories of one genre are getting tired I will switch to another, and when I get tired of that one, etc, etc. I also tend to reread my keepers to refresh my reading if I am in a slump, including one with a particular genre.

Probably the only thing that I've ever really given up on are historicals. I used to be an avid reader of the genre, but working in the field and getting fed up with modern language and idioms being used has basically killed it dead for me.

Erotic Horizon on 25 July 2010 at 07:11 said...

@Lea..

It's good to know I am just a reader who changes reading habits as the years go by...

I do in some way practice all the little tips you have given me - the novella, I am really getting into...

but I really think I am going to spread my wings and try a little bit of everything until something feels right....

I really am getting older when the heat affects my reading, I never thought anything could.

That's a readers optimism for you...

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 25 July 2010 at 07:14 said...

@Blodeuedd..

That is such a neat idea... a whole summer break from the usual and who knows I might find some new to me authors...

I see you are another one who reads low rated books - I can't seem to help myself...

Trash a book and I will read it... Sad!!!

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 25 July 2010 at 07:29 said...

@Jude

***waves wilding at you hon****

Lovely to get an authors side to this dilema....

I would imagine most authors have some variation of those question going through their heads at some stage

- as I mention the follow me culture in book world must be daunting on one hand expecially if it's not an authors strongest genre - but if it brings in the bacon what can you do...

it's like the rock and the hard place sort of situation...

One of the reason I read so much of your work is because you are all over the place ***for me that's a good thing*** you are willing to dip your toes into new worlds even for you I would imagine rather than going with the flow...

Sales - the magic reason... As readers we have the power so to speak to take it or leave it, as author you can hardly write what you dont know or even comfortable writing...

Wahtever Stephen King knows he needs to share itor bottle it at the least.. as he has cornered a market many author would love...

If you come up with any brilliant answers, share, please!

I will hon, I will...

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 25 July 2010 at 07:35 said...

@Kris...

Switching
- ... why do you think I have three books shelves just for my fiction...

Re-read - Those so work for me, everytime and they have the added bonus of sometimes kick starting a reading slump...

Historicals. Those are also some of the reasons I stop reading them, as well as authors who fail to do their research and mix up their era's..

E.H>

Lily on 25 July 2010 at 14:44 said...

Interesting post, EH :)

Right now I'm reading strictly M/M because I grew so dissatisfied and bored with M/F romances. It had happened before and I stopped reading them in favor of Horror and Paranormal. Then got back to M/F romance until once again I lost interest.

Who knows if at some point the same will happen with M/M and I'll go back to M/F? It's happened before. :)