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BookJumper

I think I've just been called a quitter?

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Personally I wouldn't spend any more time worrying about what she may or not mean and trying to analyse, as in the end it is pointless and will go nowhere. There seems to be a part of you that is offended by her comments and views it as a personal attack, perhaps your time would be better spent looking at why you feel this and viewing her as simply trying to get her point of view across, in the same way that you are.

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All she seems to be saying is that you can only properly judge however much of a given book you have read. That's perfectly reasonable.

 

But I definitely do not think you need question the ethics of tossing a book aside. Look at it this way: Everyone (this lady included) has decided not to read a book based on the synopsis or genre. In other words, everyone decides not to read books based on far less than what you base your decision not to continue reading a book on. The only thing it can possibly say about you is that you are a careless shopper.

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The only thing it can possibly say about you is that you are a careless shopper

If more bookshops had comfy armchairs for me to peruse not standing on one foot laden with bags, the outcome of my shopping might be improved upon... as it is, I am not put at the leisure to read those first, telling 40 pages without actually buying the book in question.

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That's why I really like the Amazon Look Inside feature. It's only the first five or six pages, but it at least enables you to get a taste of a writer's prose style.

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Most books I'm interested in don't have that feature, sadly; also five pages are hardly representative (they may be of style, but there's a few content issues that tend to put me off books entirely and its the kind of content few authors stick in at page five...).

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How are you doing Bookjumper? :)

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:) quite in need of hugs, actually. Stayed up late and got up early to finish, edit, print and submit my extended essays as I was assured that even if the English office was closed I could just post it through the dept. letterbox... and the whole. building. was. closed. I could have slept in, had a proper shower and breakfast, and an extra day of editing. Aaaargh. I couldn't even take out the books I needed for my next assignment (due Monday next) as the library (unstaffed today, understandable) is backwards and does not have self-issuing machines. To top it all off, I cracked my jaw while in the shower, thus undoing all the good work effected by my brace over the past two weeks - I never realised how much I was helping until I metaphorically backspaced it all. Bleh. I'm also artistically vexed, as I am toodling off to vent in the "prologues?" thread (believe me, it's on topic). :)

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Here is a hug for you ~

 

hugs_graphics_04.gif

 

:):friends0:

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... and I do strongly agree that it is wise for any author to make every effort to engage their readers within the first 40 pages of their book

 

Forty pages? Hell, these days, a new author, when querying an agent (or editor), has to engage that agent by the end of page one; even better, the author should grab that agent in the FIRST paragraph, and not let go until the very last.

 

Most readers have no idea how insanely competitive the writing game really is, and how frustrating and hurtful. One of the prerequisites for a wannabe author is to have hide like a hippo.

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Most books I'm interested in don't have that feature, sadly; also five pages are hardly representative (they may be of style, but there's a few content issues that tend to put me off books entirely and its the kind of content few authors stick in at page five...).

 

Well, BookJumper, I guess there's only one solution. Next time you go to the bookstore, take one of these. :)

 

f_SYBA100m_7aa5061.jpg

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Coming to this thread very late, as I was away - so sort of apologies for that.

 

But my reaction is a very snobbish one, I'm afraid.

 

This person has accused you of some kind of intellectual weakness. And for, of all things, not finishing Da Vinci Code, Twilight and Harry bloody Potter. Seriously? I know people enjoy these books, but surely, if anything quitting on trashier books so you can read something else is the opposite of weakness. (Even Name Of The Rose is very clearly the kind of book that would be an acquired taste - Eco is not for everyone, and I'd have thought that was obvious, too).

 

You might choose to persevere with more intellectual (or perhaps, for tact's sake, more "lauded as intellectual") books because you might expet to get something out of them even if they're not enjoyable. But if you're not enjoying Potter or Brown or Meyer then I would think there's no case at all to be made for reading them.

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Yeah I do agree with Andy (except for the Harry Potter, which is actually quite deep if you're like me and spend hours on Harry Potter forums talking about the deeper meaning and stuff), Brown and Meyer are both pretty trashy writers IMO, giving up on them is no bad thing really

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Giving up on anything is no bad thing, inherently. I gave up on Borges' Labyrinths, which is at the opposite end of the spectrum. And I gave up because it was too intellectually challenging for me.

 

I think it would be (sort of) fair to call me a quitter. Because I quit due to mental laziness, I would take the criticism. But I still don't think it was a bad thing; I won't feel bad about the laziness because the alternative was, I think, wasting my time. Giving up on any book which would otherwise be wasting your time is fine.

 

The weird thing about Brown and Meyer, though, is that unlike Borges (for example) if you're getting no pleasure out of the reading, if it's not making you turn the pages, then you're not going to get anything at all out of it, no matter how hard you persevere.

 

Well, you get yourself into the position of smugly saying "I finish everything I read", but apart from trite one-upmanship and a sort of stamp-collector/trainspotter completism (and being able to tell people that on internet fora) what, exactly, is the value of that? Better to have some extra time of your life doing something you actually get pleasure from.

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I gave up on Borges' Labyrinths

So did I actually; although I am willing to put my inability to get into it down to the translation so I will (at some point) try again. Although my introduction to Borges (if I ever find the pretty Vintage edition with pictures again) is likelier to be the "Book of Imaginary Beings".

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Bloody hell!! There have been few books that I've not been able to get past a couple of chapters. I love everything James Herbert writes, but for some bizarre reason, I cannot get past chapter 1. After several tries I just gave up.

 

I think the person who called you a quitter obviously did not know you that well, hence why the assumptions he/she made, but all the same yeah! :readingtwo:

 

Batty

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In her original post I found the suggestion from Lady that you stick to lighter reading a little patronizing, as though she patted you on the head and told you to run along while the adults talked. I remember at work the son of a member of staff was working there as a casual during the summer holiday from university, we were talking about books and I mentioned I had enjoyed The Name of The Rose and was planning to buy Foucault's Pendulum and this kid who knew nothing about me other than I had gone straight into a job from school and not gone to university told me that I probably wouldn't enjoy Foucault's Pendulum as it was a rather "intellectual'' book(he was wrong by the way). Resisting the urge to deck the patronising little ****, I found a huge pile of boring filing to keep him busy for a few hours instead of something a little more interesting. He knew nothing about me or my reading habits but made an instant judgement about me as that woman made about you. As a rule I tend not to worry to much about trolls etc on line sometimes they just aren't worth the effort.

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I always get suprised looks when people find out I read.

 

The other day at work I was talking to a friend about the film Dorian Gray, said friend didn't even know it was a book and I said yeah I've read it and someone else piped up and was all "oh really?" like I was lying ggrrrrr

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BookJumper, I would have said your reply was ott and snobbish in quoting your education, read books, etc, however the patronising cow deserved it:). You didn't get overly personal (except maybe the lady comment, but that was too funny to count) and answered her points.

 

I read her second post as defensive and a little cowed. I think you won the war, acted with honour and made your family proud against impossible odds (sorry reading military sci-fi atm).

 

I agree with the "don't feed the trolls" sentiment but I've had far worse reactions in real life. When something pushes buttons I find it's like a pool of bile in my stomach is stoked and the smack must out. :smile2:

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Arguing with people on the internet is completely pointless. It's like trying to catch fog in your hands and just makes you look really dumb. Sometimes you've just got to bite your tongue.

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