I have a confession to make. Last week, I gave up on a book* I was reading.
This is practically unheard-of for me. I mean, I’ve given up on books before, but they were usually random books I picked up with no knowledge of the author – and even then, my Type A personality usually demands I read them through to the very end. (Oh, and A Storm of Swords, which I put down after the red wedding because I couldn’t handle any more fiction-induced heartache.)
But this book came highly recommended (4.5 stars on Goodreads out of over ten thousand reviews!) Not only that, but on the surface, it was a book I should have liked. A book I wanted to like.
But, with my reading time limited by my concussion, I couldn’t bring myself to keep going with a book I just wasn’t that into. It’s not like the story was terrible, or anything, I just couldn’t connect to the character.
Now, if you’re a writer, those words probably sound eerily familiar. They’re a common refrain in rejection letters, along with “this is a very subjective business” and “it’s just not a good fit for me.”
And this is why you should query/submit widely. Because this really *is* a subjective business, and not everyone is going to enjoy every story. Lots of best sellers were rejected before they became hits – and they still don’t have universal appeal.
But the most important thing is to keep trying. Keep putting your work out there, and hopefully one day you’ll find the agent/editor/reader who is the right fit for your book. Or, at least, that’s what I’m trying to tell myself as I get ready to go on sub with my MG.
What about you? Ever given up partway through a book, or do you stick it out to the end? Ever read something popular and wondered what all the hype was about? Tell me about it in the comments.
*No, I’m not telling you which book, because, honestly, I’m kind of embarrassed I didn’t like it. Also, the world of kidlit is small, and I don’t want to step on any toes.