Schrefer described how, when writing books that are educational and may carry a message, it’s crucial that “the seams aren’t showing,” and that readers are primarily moved by the story, characters, and action. It’s just that they may also learn something significant along the way.
Don’t tell them what the lesson is supposed to be. Just let them learn it.
Nick Carraway went to college and then moved to a dirty shack on Long Island, where he tries to make money using finance and mainly just follows his neighbors around staring like a weirdo. He is currently in a mental institution because he used to drink too much because of the ’20s, so he spends his time typing his recollections of Long Island on a magic typewriter that makes his words float up into the air like cheap visual effects in a movie. (Not that I watch movies. I prefer books.)
And this is why you can’t write a book report based on a movie.
On Amazon, Dead Ever After has received 366 one-star reviews, compared with 124 five-star reviews. One reader described the “extreme disappointment” they felt with the novel by pointing to a blog post claiming that “if Charlaine Harris had written the Harry Potter series, the end of Deathly Hallows would have Harry sleeping in the cupboard under the stairs with the spiders and no magic. While Voldemort would move in across the street, taunt him daily, and dispense life advice.”
So is Voldemort supposed to be Bill Compton in this analogy?
“We think [ebooks] are ideally suited to the rhythms of a newspaper, where we are writing the first draft of history every day,” Vince Bzdek, deputy national political editor and lead for ebooks at The Washington Post, said in an email. “Ebooks are like the second draft, so [it] feels like a natural fit for us.”
Seeing “ebooks” and “second draft” in the same sentence might be confusing for some people, but, trust me, they go well together.
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