Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Does Anybody Really Care
In the iconic cartoon strip ‘Peanuts,’ Lucy van Pelt explains how one needs to be careful to hold the bat with the trademark in a certain position so it’s not damaged by the ball. She maintains that hold on the bat while the pitcher sends one...two...three balls right past her and she’s struck out. As she leaves the plate, she brags to Charlie Brown “See, I held the bat the right way and it’s fine!” Poor Charlie Brown.
How often do we feel like Lucy, being so careful to follow every rule of writing. To Show Not Tell; NEVER Head Hop; ALWAYS identify our speaker. And so on. Only to find a head hopping sloppily written book is burning up the Amazon sales.
And why isn’t your perfectly written book selling well?
If I knew the answer I’d be busting all those Amazon sales figures myself. We could blame luck. We could blame the fickleness of the reading public. Or we could take a step back and analyze what people read for. Except for writers, how many people actually read to critique the written word? Sure they’ll comment on an author changing their character’s name (or sex!) halfway through the book. But as long as a reader can believe in the requisite HEA the rest is all window dressing.
I’m not suggesting we abandon the rules of grammar. Nor should we blow Point of View out of the water (darnit). But maybe we who worry about every misplaced participle and perfect use of punctuation need to worry first about the worlds we build, and the people who live in them. Then we can paint the fences awesome colors and polish the sidewalks until they gleam.
Maybe we need to swing for a bases loaded home run, and risk cracking the bat.
Mona Karel writes books for Monica Stoner and when no one is looking she roll your eyes back in your head from trying to follow the head hopping.
BTW, there’s still time to participate in the Secret Santa Blog Hop, and who wouldn't like to find this guy coming down their chimney? Grand Prize is a Kindle Fire, next is an Amazon gift card, plus a lot of other goodies. Many of the participants offer individual prizes on their blog. I’m sharing the secret to home made vanilla extract, complete with pictures, plus other prizes. That’s at Mona's Final Secret Santa Blog
You need to head to Tabitha Blake's to gather up lots of chances for those prizes, and that’s here: Blog Hop Central From Tabitha’s blog you can hop out to the other participants, some of whom are OCC members.