Thursday, August 27, 2015

Addicted to Beginnings

(source)

I really like beginnings. I love cracking open a cover and reading the first couple of pages of a book. It's all new, all fresh, it's the first steps of an adventure. But then...After a bit, after a few chapters...It's not new any longer. 

I know the main character reasonably well (what they want, or what they're hiding) and their friends and where they live, and how their family life is. I've gotten a feel for their humor (or lack of, which for me, always stinks) and how they interact with others. 

I have SO many books on my shelves right now that I start, get a few chapters in, and then discard. And it's not that they're not good. They are good! They have intriguing characters and setting and an interesting plot. But when I go to pick it up again, I see that other book out of the corner of my eye, waving charmingly at me. Saying, "Pick me up! Read my beginning! There might be cookies, or a super sarcastic main character! Or sentient spaceships, or dragons. Maybe dragons eating cookies...?" 

I have an addiction to beginnings apparently. I guess I should just be glad it's not endings? 

So tell me, please, am I the only one who has a fascination with beginnings?

 

18 comments:

  1. I have to admit, I'm more of a sucker for a happy ending :)

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    1. I do like a happy ending. I'm okay w/more realistic ones if I can kind of see that's where it's headed. But if I'm blind-sided by it, then boo!

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  2. Maybe you should read more short stories - you might reach the end then!

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  3. That's so interesting! I'm fascinated by beginnings...but more so by middles...and perhaps even more so by endings...!

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    1. You seem to be quite pleased by all three story components. So I pronounce you...balanced! Happily adjusted! ;)

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  4. I love a great beginning and once I'm hooked, it's easy to reel me in. But as I grow older, I find myself getting pickier and pickier about the books I choose to spend my time on, so like you, I discard many books after the first few chapters. I love a book I can get lost in ... and those are a scant few.


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    1. You're right, I've found myself being a lot pickier too. And I hope it shows in my writing, b/c I don't want to write the same old tropes or themes. I want to be fresh & exciting! Woo-hoo! ;)

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  5. I'm a bit that way with writing - the new and shiny lure me away from the nearly finished but needs work. With reading though, If I like the first few pages I'll almost always keep onto the end and get there quickly.

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    1. Oh yeah, don't get me started on the shininess of a new idea! =) Those are persuasive suckers, aren't they?

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  6. I love beginnings too...I feel like SO MUCH is established in those first few paragraphs, and it's the way I know I'm in for a fun ride. If I don't have a good grasp on the voice, character and plot by the end of chapter one I know I'm in trouble lol and tend to discard for another book!

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    1. Yup, beginnings are good continue or not meters. =)

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  7. I like beginnings, but you have me smiling with your obsession. :) At least you are enjoying the beginnings!
    ~Jess

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    1. I do! It just doesn't help me make much of a dent in my TBR pile...

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  8. How interesting! There is something truly wonderful about a great beginning... learning a new cast of characters, a new setting, sometimes a whole new world. It is a thrilling process when it's done well. I can definitely see the intrigue. I seem to have the opposite problem ... I have a terrible time putting a book down. Even if I hate it. I can only remember one book in recent history that I finally put down four chapters in when I absolutely could NOT connect (despite all of the rave reviews for the book and the author's other works... maybe it was just me??). In that case, I was definitely looking forward to a new beginning. :-)

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  9. Oooo, yes, I adore a good beginning~ one where you know within a page that the book is going to be a special one :)

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  10. I have to admit I just about never put a book down even if I have to suffer 'til the ending. I guess I always hope an amazing wrap-up will make up for any earlier disappointments. I think from now on I'll look at beginnings in a whole new light!

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  11. For me, it's mostly the beginning of a book that will cause me to abandon it. Either the beginning fails to suspend my disbelief by forcing speculative aspects too soon, or I don't like the character, or I don't care for the author's style. If I get past the opening chapters I will (usually) finish the book.

    An exception is one I recently abandoned mid-way. I won't name it, but it IS a best seller and by an author whose previous work I loved. But this one -- mid-way through -- I threw up my hands and said, "I'm not buying any of this! I don't believe this part -- or that one -- and I don't care what happens next." Makes me sad when that happens.

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