Uh, I have something rather embarrassing to admit to all of you. Really, it's rather shocking and a bit difficult to talk about.
But, I'll pull my big girl panties up and get it off my chest anyway.
I. Have never. Read. HARRY POTTER. Any of it. Not one. Not a single book.
I haven't even seen one of the movies. I know - sacrilege, right?
It's not that I don't like a good mystical, magical fantasy. It's not that I don't like MG/YA/NA. Cuz I do. I've read (and continue to read) tons of books written for this age group. It's just... I don't know. I guess I was annoyed by all the hype.
That, and I've always been a bit counter-culture.
Okay - I've always been A LOT counter-culture.
I've never read any of the Fifty Shades series either. Or Twilight. To be honest, I had never read Ender's Game until last month.
It begs the question...
I know you're saying this. I've asked myself the same question on numerous occasions. Usually related to hanging my ass out at work or in similar, awkward situations, but go ahead, you can apply it to this one as well.
So here's the thing, the thing that made me think about this particular fact this morning: I want people to love my book(s) as much as they seem to love THOSE books. I want the hype and the media and the word-of-mouth and the staying-up-late-under-the-covers-to-finish moments these books seem to have brought to the reading public.
I want people talking about what they love, hate, laughed at, cried over and couldn't get out of their head. I want people to relate to my characters, to the story and situation I put the characters through and to the obstacles they have to face. I want people (readers) to FEEL the words I wrote, maybe even quote a line or two, and to go all gooey in the middle at the parts that are gooey-riffic.
I may act all...
But really, I'm like every other author out there, searching for...
So, I read the first Harry Potter book, "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone." And you know, I sort of like it. I won't say I LOVED it, because it is, after all, written for a MUCH YOUNGER audience. But I think, if I were that MUCH YOUNGER audience, I would probably have loved it.
I liked the characters and the pacing and the humor and plot lines. I liked the suspense and how close Harry and his friends are. Yeah. I liked it. I liked it enough to go on to book 2, "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets." I have to admit, it's a bit slower getting started, but I'm still reading it.
I have not, will not and refuse to read Twi-Twi or 50/50. Nope. Won't do it. Can't. It would be like breaking the secret code of all want to be taken semi-seriously (at least enough to to sell a few copies) authors everywhere. Maybe that's a bit harsh, coming from an as-yet unsold author, and a bit unfair to say, since I haven't read the books. But - when you've heard as much about the lack of craft in those books as I have, I. Can't. Do. It.
So call me a snob. Call me a bitch. Call me whatever you want. Am I jealous that they've sold like, a gazillion copies and got movie rights and are swimming in money?
Of course I am, do you think I'm nuts? I'd kill for that kind of fandom.
But I have to live with myself, and my books. Maybe my books aren't that good. Maybe you'll hate my characters, my plot, my pacing and my style. Maybe you'll read the first one and say "God, never again will I waste my time/money/existence on such tripe!"
Then again, maybe you'll find one or two words that I've stitched together and say "whoa - that's beautiful. That means something to me."
Maybe. I hope so. Until then, I'm still not reading that shit.