Writing is difficult. It looks easy, but that’s because those who understand what they’re doing make it look easy. They also tend to follow the rules of writing. Yes. There are rules, and you need to know them to understand how and when to bend them or in some cases brake them.
Such as the, I’ve got more money than dirt, mega rock stars of the writing world.
Recently, I picked up a book by this class of author. I’ll just call him Mr. P. While I’ve read other books by this person and liked the storys, his recent titles have me questioning his state of mind.
Because he is putting his name with other authors but doesn’t seem to bother proofreading the book.
I’m talking about Mr. P’s latest book. It’s written first person. Which wouldn’t be so bad if it stayed first person. It head hops from a first person main character, to first person killer, then to third person cop. This is called Point of View shift. Most agents and publishers would be okay with third person POV shifts as long as there are the proper breaks alerting the reader. Like say, a chapter break or asterisk. Mixing two different firsts with a third is unheard of. Let’s face it. Unless you’re a big name, your book would be round filed.
Another thing I noticed was all the tiny chapters. Three page chapters. Why break up what should have been a ten to fifteen page scene into mini chapters? Did they need to make the book bigger? I felt like I was watching/reading a soap opera were you only got thirty seconds of story before a commercial break. I half expected to see a – to be a continued tomorrow – note at the end of each chapter. Thank God, I did not get the audio version of this story. I would have tossed it in the garbage after chapter five.
The story was meh; the format was crap. The sad thing is, the story had the potential to be magnificent. Had I not seen Mr. P’s name on the cover, I would have thought it was written by a self-published author who didn’t know the basic rules of writing.
Is this what the big publishing houses are coming to? Are they having this much trouble that they have to silver coat a story, any story, to make a dime?
I’m not trying to down self-published authors. I’m one of them. But I do try to put out the best possible story I can. Yes. It’s a learning curve, and my older stuff is not as clean as the newer. If you don’t know you can’t fix it. But once you understand, you can avoid that particular pothole.
This thing with Mr. P does make me wonder where good books are going. Styles change throughout the years, but they’ve never been so drastic as they are now.