Are you an avid reader?

persian kitten book-2

This post might be considered a bit of a rant, but I’ve given much thought to this topic. You know, there comes a time when you’re on social media and you’re so concerned with maintaining the “proper” image that you stifle those words. You know what I’m talking about…

I’m a writer that loves to read. Let me clarify, I’m a writer that has always loved to read. I grew up reading the classics, the girly stuff, the smutty ones, as well as the urban reads. What’s interesting about that, I’ve never gotten set in my ways. My TBR List contains an array of treasures that I some day hope to complete. But make no mistake, I do not discount anyone’s work or efforts.

For me, reading is an opportunity to explore someone else’s world. I don’t necessarily need to have been a part of the experience to want to explore, yet I’m curious that way. I might see a title or book cover that speaks to me. I’ve even been intrigued by an author’s name. I particularly love historical and literary fiction but recognize that there’s more out there for me to potentially get lost in. And when I explore, I adjust my mindset, free up my thinking.

I believe I’m an avid reader. As I’ve mentioned above, I look at covers and titles. Here’s the difference… If those attributes were clever enough to catch my attention, then I do try to give those books a shot. And when I do dive in, I clear my mind of any preconceived notions of what a perfect storyline should be.

Here’s where I get to the touchy part. Might I also add, if you have an idea of where I’m going with this and you already don’t agree, please *STOP HERE*.

I have an English degree and have studied the different types of critical theories. I’ve written about them and compared texts for classes. This type of in-depth analysis fascinates me; however, as an avid reader, I just want to read. I refuse to spend the time comparing someone’s work to another author’s, even trying to bash anyone’s attempts. One thing I’ve come to learn: you can be an exceptional writer, but that doesn’t necessarily translate to an exceptional storyteller. Nevertheless, this might all be subjective. Even still, I’ve enjoyed stories that are far from literary. There’s more to life, you know. A particular story might speak to me in a way that might not connect with the next person. Might I also add, some stories are simply that – just a story. Period!

I can recall browsing the reviews of a well-known author some time ago and reading a particular review that pretty much thrashed the story as not being a “literary work”. Mind you, I don’t believe it was meant to be. The story was thought-provoking; in fact, I have read the title several times over. I was hurt by the reviewer’s comments because I love the author’s work. Obviously, this person went into reading with this idea that this particular storyline should be literary though it’s listed as metaphysical (I believe).

Oh okay…

Doesn’t quite make sense to me, but who am I to say. I’m just a girl that fell in love with words thirty plus years ago. A bit of background on me…

My library has included:

The Brontë Sisters

TS Eliot (poet, amongst other things)

Anne Sexton (poet)

Shakespeare

Ernest Hemingway

F Scott Fitgerald

William Faulkner

Judy Blume

Virginia Woolf

Zora Neale Hurston

Eric Jerome Dickey

Teri Woods

Terry McMillian

Maya Angelou

Elizabeth Bowen

VC Andrews

Frances Pascal

Maeve Binchy

Richelle Mead

Laurell K. Hamilton

Paulo Coelho

And many more…

As of present, I’ve been introduced to a new set of authors. This next list is made up of authors that I believe should be sampled because they are unique and have great stories to tell. They produce books from a variety of genres but are still fascinating to explore. Some write literary, others write nonfiction. Some write horror, while others write romance or a mixture. Some also write kick-butt urban and suspense. Please keep in mind, these are just some of the ones that I’ve come to enjoy.

Christoph Fischer (Historical/Literary Fiction & Thrillers)

Dormaine G (Horror, Paranormal, Science Fiction & YA)

Taylor Fulks (Nonfiction)

Margo Bond Collins (Paranormal & Romance w/ awesome heroines)

Nicole Dunlap (Women’s Fiction & Thrillers)

Perri Forrest (Women’s Fiction & Romance)

JP Lane (International Thriller)

Angelia Vernon Menchan (Women’s Fiction/Fictionalized Truth)

Ben Woodard (YA & Children’s Lit)

Zoe Saadia (Historical Fiction)

Cole Hart (Urban Fiction/Street Lit)

Sabrina Eubanks (Urban Fiction, AA Romance)

PS Rowland (Poetry)

Mary Elizabeth Coen (Women’s Fiction)

~~~~~

Go ahead, test out a new author and keep an open mind. Try not to be stuffy. Just focus on getting lost in the storyteller’s world.

Any thoughts or comments?

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10 thoughts on “Are you an avid reader?

  1. Very good post. There’s a difference in reviewing to critique an author’s strengths versus weakens and whats being explained here. However, readers chose books based on interest in title, cover etc as you’ve stated. But when a book falls short of a person’s perception…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post, Janice!
    My motto…we read what we need. When I sit down to read a book, I leave the editorial aspect behind and focus on getting lost in the story. If I can do that, the book is a huge success. <>

    And thank you from my soul, for including me in your TBR list. I am humbled and truly honored.

    Liked by 1 person

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