How Important Is the Writing?


You’ve been recommended a “great,” “sexy,” “fun,” “alluring” book! Awesome, you think!  You buy the book, you find a comfy place in your home, and then open the book.

Well, when you’re not even 50 pages into it and you’re enjoying the story, but you’ve noticed or even questioned a few things — this means that it’s not written correctly, not did they have a good editor!

I started the book “Fifty Shades of Grey,” (don’t forget about its trilogy: HERE), a few days ago on my iPad, and then I bought a copy for my hubby, (which I’ll be writing about his outlook on it once he’s finished with it).  Before he stated I saw a few mistakes, and while I’m not an expert, but I think that a lot of people who are reading the book and giving great reviews don’t care about the writing.  One my husband read the first chapter, he said that he wanted to “take a red pen to it!”  I don’t blame him.  This leads me to today’s blog post!

HOW IMPORTANT TO YOU IS GOOD WRITING VS. A GOOD BOOK WITHOUT GOOD WRITING?

Since I’m now working with editors, I’ve started to think like them — Why think this, Why say this, and Does this make sense?  When I was younger, I didn’t pay much attention to grammar or thoughts, but since I’ve grown, it’s all that I pay attention to when I read!  For fun, I’m reading “Fifty Shades of Grey,” the book that everyone is talking about (yes, I might be wanting a thrill).  I’m sixty-five pages into it, and I’ve been wanting to take a red pen to it myself, like my hubby!  Oh, my gosh!  If I didn’t have to have read six (yes, 6) chapters before anything happens, then I wouldn’t care so much, because action would be happening.  I’ve even considered not finishing this book!  With exceptional reviews, is it just about the book?  Probably so!  If the writing was graded, I bet it’d get a 1 out of 5 stars, (read my review for “Fifty Shades of Grey” that will be coming soon)!

My question to you is do you prefer books written with bad writing and the story is good, or do you get through it and read a book because of its storyline?

8 thoughts on “How Important Is the Writing?

  1. That’s a really good question. If the writing is consistently bad, I’d have a hard time reading it even if the story was great. I think the exception is if it’s your own book(s) because you love the story and the characters so it’s make the sacrifice easier.

  2. I had a couple of people in my writer’s critique group who had great stories to tell, but their writing had much to be desired. Of course, they came to our group to improve their writing, but it didn’t ever seem to improve. After a while, their great stories just didn’t interest me anymore. The passive words and flat description distracted me. I couldn’t enjoy it any longer. Just my two cents.

  3. I would rather not read a book at all than read one well-written and with an empty storyline. I can forgive mistakes in grammar and such, they don’t bother me. Stories are my deal. However, editing is important, and every writer does need an editor. Some editors are better than others, of course, so you really have to get lucky. Unless a novel has a typo per page, I would still read it if it had a great storyline. Flow and style is important and I think every writer should strive to improve their work, but there are millions of people who can write well, and not nearly as many great stories.

  4. Sometimes I notice that a book is written poorly and my mental red pencil wound up getting replaced several times during the read but, as far as the story went, well, it made up for either poor proofreading, editing, or someone just screwing the pooch and letting something slip through the cracks.

    I know when I write – and unless I’m deliberately writing as if I just learned how to do it – it drives me nuts when I make mistakes that my word processor’s grammar and spellchecker might miss. I understand, with the way I tend to write at times, making it grammatically correct actually doesn’t convey the thought or doesn’t set the tone for the passage; it doesn’t jive with the character, stuff like that.

    I have thrown away entire chapters because they just weren’t well-written… and I’m sure that if my ninth grade English teacher could see how I write in the first person, I’d be in detention for the rest of my life.

    I figure that if you’re reading a book and you’re finding spelling and grammatical errors, yeah, maybe the writer needs a better editor because those things just shouldn’t happen.

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