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:~: Tuesday, April 03, 2007 :~:

Reading Habits

I'm on a break from writing for the next day or two, and I've been catching up on some reading. There are a few books I've been dying to read, but haven't had the time until now. Like a lot of writers, I'm also a big reader. My bookshelves are overflowing, and my TBR pile is generally huge, no matter how many books I read every month, because I'm usually (and a bit compulsively) buying more.

When I first started writing, I remember hearing that writers should read in the genre they're writing in, to get a feel for the market and to see what's selling at the moment. I do this, to a point, but usually I seek out books that are different from what I'm writing at the moment. I like a change of pace sometimes. If I'm writing something really dark, I usually pick up a comedy to read. If I'm writing a romantic comedy, I tend to grab a Greg Isles or Nelson DeMille book off my shelf.

I don't usually go by book reviews when I buy since taste is so subjective (and I tend to read some pretty oddball books), but I find if there's a lot of online controversy about a book, I'm more compelled to pick it up and see what the fuss is all about.

Do you read what you're writing, or look for something else? Do you read reviews before purchasing? How big is your TBR pile?


Blogger Elisabeth Naughton said...

I generally read in my genre - or if out of my genre, at least something with some sort of suspense thread. I never read reviews as opinions are so varied, but pay attention to what other writers are talking about - who's hot, which books are getting attention, etc. And I have a couple of friends who know what I like, so when they tell me they've read something great, I know I'll usually like it.

Great post, Elisa. Enjoy your reading time. I'm jealous! I'm mired down in the WIP and determined to push through.

10:46 AM  
Blogger Joan Swan said...

I'm a sporadic reader. And, unfortunately, I'm terribly picky. I get bored easily and find myself skimming. The last book I really read w/o skimming was Roxanne St. Claire's Dangerous Curves, and I have to admit, I did skim at the end. The best one I'd read before that was Tami Hoag's Kill the Messenger -- but I listened to that on book tape, and when I bought the book and started reading it, I found it much harder to stay interested.

Consequently, I don't read as much as I should or even as much as I would like. And my TBR pile is more of a To Be Finshed (Read) pile.

I'm the opposite of E...she compulsively reads to the end, and I rarely make it to the end.

11:24 AM  
Blogger Linda Winfree said...

I read anything and everything. I don't generally read a lot of my genre (although my next TBR book is in my genre, kinda). I end up reading a lot of books for school. Also, I tend to pick books because of word-of-mouth -- I read The Bitch Posse because I'd read about if on Alison Kent's blog. If you look in my Amazon cart right now, half the books are there because someone somewhere was talking or writing about them.

And I concur with E -- enjoy your reading! I'm reading research papers this week. Sigh.

7:21 PM  
Blogger Elisa said...

J, I'm usually a compulsive reader, too. I can only think of 2 books I haven't finished...and the one I'm reading right now might end up being the third. I'm also pretty much always reading if I'm sitting down and not working. LOL I do skim a lot, though, if the book isn't really keeping my attention.

Eli, good luck with the WIP. :) I finished my last contracted book for Samhain last week, so I need a break. I need a little downtime in between books to recharge, especially if I crank a book out way too fast because I'm backed up against a deadline (because I put off writing the book for way too long...LOL...which I'm really trying to stop doing)

Lin, ugh on the research papers. I've got Anna Campbell's Claiming the Courtesan in my Amazon cart right now, because of all the buzz it's gotten lately. I don't often read historicals, but I've heard so much about this one that I want to get it and see if it's as controversial as everyone seems to be saying.

7:54 AM  

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