Calories and Pages

I had a couple of readers ask me why I bothered to finish The Burnt House if I disliked it so much. Seems like a fair question. I have a multi-part response:

First, I don’t read like I used to. There was a time I devoured books! A book on the night stand, a book in the bathroom, an audio in the car…I had multiple stories going at one time. I could keep them all straight and I loved reading every book (even if I didn’t love every story). Now, pfft, I start a book, put it down. Start a new book, leave it behind. Start another book…you get the idea. I’d begin many books and finish none. I still have a book in every room, on every table, but only because that’s where I left it when I stopped reading. So, I decided I will finish what I start. Even dreadfully bad books.

Second, there is still much to discover from a book I find flawed. I mean, come on, it’s by Faye Kellerman! She’s a New York Times best selling author with over 30 publications, many of which I’ve enjoyed. She must be doing something right. She has a lot to teach and I have room to grow.

Third, I think it’s okay to have an opinion. I think it’s okay to share that opinion. BUT, I also believe there should be depth to your opinion. Can I truly say a book is bad if I didn’t even read it? If you happen to LOVE The Burnt House, if it happens to be your FAVORITE book of all time, cool beans. I respect that. I would love to discuss!

A few years back, I had a friend who compared unsatisfying calories to non-pleasurable reading. Why finish a piece of pie you don’t really like? Why waste valuable calories on a bland cookie? She said reading was the same way–why waste pages on a story you don’t enjoy? With SO MANY flavorful delicacies out there (literary and dessert-y), why not hold out for what you truly savor? I thought that was brilliant. But honestly, it’s gotten too easy to not finish a book. Too easy to find fault and stop reading. I think I’m starving. I need nourishment, even if that means consuming bland pages.

It’s a theory. I’m sticking with it.

Thank you for reading. I hope you consider my posts to be tasty morsels.

About Mary Fran Says

I am an artist, crafter, designer and writer. I enjoy working with mixed media-- applying visual and tactile manipulations to telling a story. Not a lot of market for that, though, :), so I'm focusing on short story submissions and novel completions. Yes, plural. Lots of beginnings, too many ideas, not enough focus.
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