Calling all Readers

"So what are those magic ingredients that make a novel a page-turner? What sustains the interest of the reader? What makes the reader care about what happens? What gives the reader a sense of involvement? What makes you buy a novel?"

I saw these questions on a writing forum today and they really grabbed my attention. I'm a writer, but before I was a writer, I was a reader.  It just makes sense that if I answer these questions as a reader, I will be a better writer...right?

So, I'm a reader, how would you answer these questions? I would love to hear your answers, because your opinion will make me a better writer, too.


(Copyright© 2011 Jan Christiansen. All rights reserved.)


Linda S said...

a strong character..
for me action, lots of activity, doesn't matter if the action is fantasy...
being involved..mentally
a subject that is well debated, or involves readers without opinion...
Almost anything..I like the covers, packaging is important to me, No sex, or racy talk, woman involved, Laura Childs is one of my favorite authors, Mary Higgins Clark, although sometime to strong on the mystery, take a while to read.
Series, I love series, gives me something to look forward to.

Janel said...

I like complex characters. Those deep, dark secrets and skeletons in the closet are my favorites. I often find books for my TBR list by reading my friends' blogs, many of them are book reviewers. A good cover will catch my eye, at least make me pause and take a look, but doesn't necessarily mean I'll buy it. One thing I don't like is characters who have traits that I can't stand in people in real life. I won't spend my time reading about a person who annoys me.

Hope this helps a bit!

Jan Christiansen said...

Linda and Janel - these are great responses that really give me things to think about as I create characters and work out plot lines.

I'm trying to come up with a good idea for NaNoWriMo this November, so I will keep your input in mind. Thanks for taking time to answer.

Would love more comments from others, too.