I finished a book today.
There’s something draining about reading a really spectacular, gripping, gritty, fast-paced book. It leaves you feeling as if you’ve been in the book. Running the race. Fighting. Pouring out your emotions. Being tossed and thrown this way and that by incomprehensible circumstances. I felt like I was in the book I just read. Now I’m tired.
And, naturally, now I want the next one. At least I know it’s a good book, because I have to wait. I’m in line. My family’s reading it too and I’m next.
Good books leave you tired. And unsatisfied. It’s as if the author is playing a game with us. Lead us into their world, throw everything in our faces, tie us down so we can’t escape. And then suddenly, unexplainable, they let us go and we fall back into dusty reality. What about the story? Finished. You can’t end it like that! I just did. It’s disturbing to say the least.
But I should know about that game. I play it myself. Yes I write. A dabble and dance with words as I see fit, or as the words see fit. They don’t consult me that often. Usually they just come, in the dead of night, when I’ve just turned off my laptop, gone to bed and am looking forward to relaxing. Bam! Ideas galore. But I know about the game authors play with their readers. And I think that’s why, to this day, the game continues. When you start writing you want to leave your readers dangling. Pay back. Authors of old did it to you, so the new generation of writers wants their turn to utterly exhaust and gobsmack their readers.
It’s hard coming out of a book world. But at least it’s a half satisfying feeling. You know you loved the book. You know it was a good book (you can’t get it out of your head!). And you know you want more. I think authors thrive on knowing that. I think I would too, if my books ever were published.
Right now I’m exhausted. The book is finished. And I’m looking forward to the day I can drag an unsuspecting reader into my book and then drop them when they least expect it. They’ll just sit there, like I am now, tired and unsatisfied and wanting more. Maybe that’s the mark of a talented author.