Don’t Judge a Book by the Author’s Personality
A rather long rant about what makes a good reason to buy a book or choose to pass, hoping to prove that how friendly or nice the author is has no place in that decision.
There are millions and millions of books out there, all enticing us to choose them, tempting us with their story lines, their characters, their unique style, their covers, and the occasional discount or special promotion. Choosing is difficult. One wants to read what they love, but also sample other genres. So we all come up with our subjective process of selecting the books we spend our money on. While all this is perfectly fine, who the author is in their private life is starting to play a very important part in our choices.
This is the age of Social Media. We expect authors to hang out with us on their blogs, on Goodreads, on Facebook, on twitter, on instagram. We like them to be nice and accommodating and sweet and… yes, always there. We reward them with our eternal fangirling and our purchase of their new books.
I hate to break it to you, but some authors can be obnoxious. They can be mean, self-centered, and downright rude. They can be introverts, they can hate interactions, or they can even be agoraphobics. They won’t come to conventions, they won’t thank you for your review on Facebook, they will offend you, and they will make you think they are a sorry excuse for a human being. My question to you is… So what? They still write amazing books, don’t they?
You hire a lawyer for their ability to negotiate contracts, keep your ass out of jail, make fines disappear, and the likes. Do you care that they are not that fun to hang around outside their job? We buy Microsoft products although Bill Gates has been less than nice to a lot of people. True, he donates a lot of money. Also, we use Facebook although Zuckerberg is, well, himself. We’d still go to the best doctor out there, even if that doctor had the personality of House!
Yet for some twisted reason, when it comes to authors, we expect them to write great books AND be nice! Don’t get me wrong, I love interacting with other writers and readers! I love to help everyone out every way I can. Also, I have been treated like crap for no good reason and without any explanation by people I’ve been nothing but nice to. Does that mean I stopped buying their books? Hell, no! I 1-clicked that new book faster than you can say “asshole.”
What are an author’s obligations to their readers:
- Write well
- Write interesting new books
- Write some more
- If possible, release more books every year.
Valid reasons to not buy an author’s book:
- You don’t like their style
- You don’t like their stories
- Even if you used to love them, they just don’t click with you anymore.
Authors do not need to wine and dine us for us to buy their books. We have to learn to understand there is a difference between the job (writing) and the person doing it. Then again, what do I know? I kept rooting for Schummacher even after he deliberately tried to get someone out of a race with him… He was still the best driver ever!
I agree we all tend to rush and buy the books of those we are closest to, the authors who interact with us more and so on. Yet refusing to buy great books just because the author has a shitty personality is, to me at least, a waste. That is simply my opinion though. So let’s hear it from you!
P.S. After you tell me what you think, please make sure you follow me everywhere! 😀
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