Okay. I tried and I tried to complete the allegedly Harry Harrison novel, The Hammer and the Cross. And, while it wasn’t horrible, it just never grabbed me. As a writer, I’ve been told to grab the reader in the first five pages. I went through half of the book and I could still care less that the main character had lost his true love, been sold into slavery and had his eye gouged out. Those are pretty major things for a character to experience and one should feel at least something. I didn’t.
Last week, I was writing a companion article for my upcoming nonfiction book (Zooming Thru Life) called “Zooming Through Your Book: Ten Creative Tips To Keep The Pages Turning On Whatever Book You're Reading.” At the end of the article I gave a bonus tip that reads as follows:
Bonus: Read only what interests you
Life is too short to read a book only because you started it. Don’t waste your minutes on this planet plodding through something that bores you to tears. Follow this simple rule: If you can put it down, you probably should. Then, whether it’s fiction or nonfiction, read something enthralling. Something that captivates you. Something that you can connect to. Something that speaks to your heart. Something you cannot put down.That’s what reading should be about.
I realized after I wrote it, that I wasn’t making much progress in my current book because I didn’t care about it. I had forgot why I was reading to begin with and it took giving potential readers my best advice to snap me out of it. So I took my own advice. I retired that book as well as its two companion novels in the trilogy. Sorry Harry. Life’s too short.
So now I’m reading a Batman novel. It’s fairly new. It’s called “Dead White” and it’s by John Shirley. So far, it’s pretty cool but I’ve only read one chapter. It seems to marginally take place in the universe of the Batman Begins film, which is fine by me.
Let’s see if I can zoom through this one.