*Sighs in frustration*
I had a whole post written about how I’m still thinking about what makes a book special, and my thoughts on authors like Suzanne Collins and Stephenie Meyer and J.K. Rowling. About how they didn’t set out to make their books special, but rather they more likely set out to write a good story that was fresh and authentic. And how those stories became public phenomenons.
But then my computer battery died—with no prior warning—and for some stupid reason, I couldn’t recover that document.
*grabs hair and suppresses a scream*
So. Anyway. About special again. I’m still thinking. Still pondering the thing that makes a book pop for me. And I’ve decided that a story has to be authentic enough to grab me by the heart and pull me along with the protagonist, feeling what he or she feels and living in his or her shoes. But also, it has to be fresh enough that I don’t feel like I’ve read this story a hundred times over.
You know, special like that.
But in order for a book to be both fresh and authentic, I think the writer can’t necessarily set out to write it that way. It can’t be premeditated, but rather should be written with feeling and emotion that comes so naturally that it shows through in the story and with the characters. (When I say premeditated, I’m not talking about pre-planned as in outlining. I’m talking about forcing a character to feel something they shouldn’t, or wouldn’t, or don’t, just for the sake of the story.)
Kind of like life, right? Right. What do you think? Can you tell the difference between fresh and stale and authentic and contrived? (Not asking for examples here, just maybe thoughts.) Do you think this is part of what makes a book special to you?