I’m doing a lot of prep for NaNoWriMo. (That’s National Novel-Writing Month, which is November)
Most of it involves research- I’m subscribing to some new blogs, clicking around websites, and (maybe) signing up for a few classes.
Some of it involves plotting- I have a beautiful stack of multi-colored 3×5 cards. Whenever I get a scene idea, I jot it down. Soon I’ll be arranging them in a pleasing, plot-climbing order.
A lot of it, however, involves reading. Not just research books. I’m reading YA fiction. A lot. Because (as evidenced in this post), I can’t read while I write. So I’m reading two or three or four books a week in order to the make up for the month I’ll be book MIA.
Once in a while, however, I come across a book that makes me want to stop reading. Sometimes it’s because the book is so beautiful and amazing that I’m sure whatever comes next will pale in comparison. I need time to digest it and sigh about it. This happened with The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I was daydreaming about that book for weeks! (My review is here, if you want to read it).
Most of the time, though, when a book makes me want to stop reading, it’s because I feel like I’ve been bitten by it. 5-star reviews, critical acclaim, and NYT Best-seller lists mislead me into thinking that it will be fantastic. And, in short, it’s not. Sometimes it’s the writing, sometimes it’s the story, sometimes it’s the lack of either. Woe to the first person who talks to me after I slam the back cover! Two hours later, I may be done stewing about it, but probably not. Sometimes it takes days. Sometimes weeks! People ask me what I’m reading and I scowl and say, “Nothing.”
There are a smattering of authors that I read after such occurrences, because I know that their beautiful stories will heal my gaping book-wound. After reading something by Laurie Halse Anderson, Sarah Dessen, or Marcus Zusak, I am ready to give it another go.
Does that happen to anybody else out there? Can a single book put you off of reading for a week or more?