Would You Buy This Book? discussion

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Buying Decisions

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message 1: by Antara (new)

Antara Mann | 4 comments Would you buy this book?
I plan making this title permafree. If the book is on a free promo or permafree, would you download it and read it?
http://amzn.to/1wfIUe2


message 2: by Stéphane (new)

Stéphane Desienne (desienne) | 2 comments Would you buy this book?
Should I mention the success of French edition to attract on US readers?
What else should I have to mention?

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RSEOCW8


message 3: by Brian (new)

Brian Foster (bwfoster78) Antara,

Congrats (and thanks for) being the first author to post.

Note that I'm not in the market for short fiction like your novella. As such, normally I wouldn't comment on it. However, I'm trying to get the ball rolling on this group, so I'll comment as if I were in the market.

Here's what I saw on your Amazon page:

1. Description

Positives: Using bold and different colors makes it stand out from your average indie author. I like that you focus on a character immediately. Liked the "what readers are saying" section.

Negatives: Hate the ellipses. Reads overdramatic to me. Didn't like that you name two characters and both start with J. Already, there's a source of potential confusion. Plot might be a bit contrived with the whole magic beans thing.

Overall, not bad. Good enough for me to continue on...

2. Reviews

I tend to skim the reviews to see if anything stands out. Nothing really there one way or the other for me with the reviews for this work.

Overall, neutral.

3. Sample

Most traditionally published books don't indent the first line of a chapter. The first thing that I noticed is that this one had indents. Just tells me that maybe the author isn't trying hard to mimic traditionally published quality.

From the first sentence: the words...were echoing... Why not, "The words echoed"? Just a little style thing that bugs me.

The entire prologue is backstory with no tension or interest. Why should I care about any of this?

The first line of chapter 1 starts with unattributed dialogue. That's followed by a transcript of an interview in which nothing happens and little emotional context is expressed.

Sorry, but, by the end of that first scene, you completely lost my interest.

If I'm going to buy a book, it has to grab my attention. With nothing happening and no real insight into the character, I just didn't care enough to buy it.

Hope this helps.

Brian


message 4: by G.G. (last edited Jan 27, 2015 01:09PM) (new)

G.G. (ggatcheson) Stéphane wrote: "Would you buy this book?
Should I mention the success of French edition to attract on US readers?
What else should I have to mention?

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RSEOCW8"


Ok I guess honesty is what people who post here seek so understand I'm not here to hurt anyone's feeling.

The cover is attractive and I LOVE the idea behind your story. Diseases and Aliens, what's not to like? I admit, this is something I would normally check out BUT, yes sadly, there's a but... I barely ever buy a book under 220-250 pages. I don't mind small cliffhangers, but I hate when a story cut short, and seeing episode one here screams it loud and clear. For me, that would be turn off. :(
I know there might be people who like it that way so that means I'm probably not your audience.

(I'm sorry. I've just seen Brian's detailed review and I realize mine probably doesn't meet the requirement. If it needs deleted, please, go ahead.)


message 5: by Brian (new)

Brian Foster (bwfoster78) Stéphane wrote: "Would you buy this book?
Should I mention the success of French edition to attract on US readers?
What else should I have to mention?

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RSEOCW8"


The first thing that I see when looking at the book's Amazon page is the title. Here's how it reads:

Toxic - Episode one: Homo-Putridus (English edition) (Toxic (English edition) Book 1)

The long string of repetitive information with no consistency in the capitalization is off-putting.

Also, I want to know immediately, "Is this a novel or a novella?" The page count and cost seems to imply novella, but I'm not sure. If it is a novella, you need to tell me. If not, you may want to point out somewhere that this is a full length book.

Normally, when I'm looking at buying a book, I look at, in order, the description, the reviews, and the sample. Here's what I found:

1. Description

Zombies aren't our only problem!

Not a huge zombie guy, so you'd have probably lost me here. I'm going to keep going with the evaluation, though, as if I were interested.

"Our" gives me pause. I get that you want to include me in the story, but it seems awfully melodramatic to do so. Perhaps "humanity" here?

The next paragraph is backstory that makes me think this story is plot based. I tend to prefer character based fiction. If this is plot based, you're fine. If it's not, you may want to think about the message you're sending.

The third paragraph focuses on an alien character. This tells me that the alien character is the protagonist while the first two paragraphs seemed to indicate that the aliens are the bad guys. I'm confused. Leaving me confused is not good.

The fourth paragraph finally introduces what I assume might be the actual protagonist? Might be best to open with this.

Overall, the description left me ready to go find something else to read.

I like the idea of mentioning the book's popularity in France. I'd put a section at the end here noting its success and quoting some reviewers.

2. Reviews

There are no reviews. For me, that's a Bad Thing. You need to put in the work to get some English speaking reviewers to post something.

3. Sample

Season 1? More confusion for me. I get book one, but season one makes me think tv.

I hate, hate, hate starting with unattributed dialogue.

Next thing that I notice is that you're not really inside his head. He wouldn't notice his three scaly fingers, etc. I tend to prefer close POV to omniscient.

The first scene is a dry conversation that aliens are having about harvesting humans. I could see how that kind of thing could be interesting, but it failed to resonate with me. Too dry without any real tension or emotion. Question: why not show the horror by introducing a character who's being harvested?

Overall, even were I interested in the subject manner, I wouldn't buy the book because it failed to grab my interest.

Hope this helps.

Brian


message 6: by Brian (new)

Brian Foster (bwfoster78) G.G. wrote: "Stéphane wrote: "Would you buy this book?
Should I mention the success of French edition to attract on US readers?
What else should I have to mention?

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RSEOCW8"

Ok I gu..."


GG,

Your comments were excellent. Don't worry that they weren't as detailed as mine.

Thanks for the contribution, and I hope you continue to offer of your time.

Brian


message 7: by Stéphane (new)

Stéphane Desienne (desienne) | 2 comments Dont' worry ! Comments are necessary and helpfull for correcting whatever I may have done wrong.
It is very important, I am also here to learn from others. It is the only way to make progress.
Thanks Brian & GG for your detailled reviews.


message 8: by Antara (new)

Antara Mann | 4 comments Stéphane wrote: "Would you buy this book?
Should I mention the success of French edition to attract on US readers?
What else should I have to mention?

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RSEOCW8"


About the first indent, I noticed that too and corrected it, about the same letter with one of the secondary character, maybe I can replace the name to J. Bailey?
The choice of words is pretty subjective and the way you judge a book only by its first pages is not very pleasant but I understand it. I also need to be hooked right from the start but no all great books start like shining diamonds: think The Count of Monte Cristo. The first 50-60 pages were so boring I was about to give up but then it went absolutely addictive. However, I have experienced also books to start very interesting and then later on, I lost interest. Definitely a book should be judged as whole creation.


message 9: by Brian (new)

Brian Foster (bwfoster78) Antara wrote: "Stéphane wrote: "Would you buy this book?
Should I mention the success of French edition to attract on US readers?
What else should I have to mention?

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RSEOCW8"

About t..."


Antara,

Regarding judging a book as a whole creation, I definitely understand where you're coming from. It's quite possible that my methodology is making me miss out on some books that I otherwise would enjoy. Let me give you some more background on the madness behind my method, however:

1. I employ this methodology only with new authors/books that I've happened across. If the book is from an author that I've read and liked, I'm much more likely to buy the book even if it doesn't engage me at the start. That author has already gained my trust. I also give the book more of a chance if it comes highly recommended from someone or a review site that I trust.

2. There are thousands of new books available every day. Counting all the old books I've never read, there exists on Amazon more books than I could ever possibly read. As a consumer, I can afford to be picky. Not only that, the more books I evaluate, the better the chance I'll find one that I really like. I need to make quick decisions on purchasing. Just the reality of the marketplace.

3. It is really difficult to write material that pulls me into the story and doesn't let me go. I've found that a seriously small percentage of authors can pull it off. Unfortunately, that's one of the two qualities that I want most in a book - if it's midnight and I've got to get to work early the next morning but I'm still up because I can't put your book down, then you rock as an author. Because I really desire this quality and have found that few can deliver it, it's an easy way for me to eliminate books from consideration. Did the book pull me in from the start? If yes, buy. If no, go on to the next.

Regarding your other questions:

Can the secondary character just be renamed? Simply name her something else and do a replace all. Would take like 5 seconds to do. J. Bailey is better, but why not name her Bailey. That's a pretty cool name.

The choice of words is pretty subjective. Correct, but I think you're referring to my objection to "were echoing."

Note that most authors and editors consider the following to be positives:

Using the least number of words possible to express a thought

Using strong verbs that create a sense of motion

"Echoed" versus "were echoing" is both a more economical word choice and utilizes a stronger verb.

Note that a single instance of such a choice doesn't make a hill of beans difference in a reader's enjoyment. I've noticed, however, that writers who are more advanced in the techniques they use tend to choose not to add extraneous "wases/weres" to their writing. I've also noticed that writers who are more advanced in the techniques they use tend to, overall, produce works that I enjoy more. Therefore, I use such technical issues as a data point in my evaluation process. If the writing engaged me, I wouldn't say, "Well, the book seems cool but she used an extraneous 'were.' I'm not going to buy it." I would note, however, that such a use might be indicative of the writer not being as professional as I would like.

Hope this helps clarify my thoughts.

Brian


message 10: by Brian (new)

Brian Foster (bwfoster78) Stéphane wrote: "Dont' worry ! Comments are necessary and helpfull for correcting whatever I may have done wrong.
It is very important, I am also here to learn from others. It is the only way to make progress.
Tha..."


You're welcome. Like I said, hope it helped.

Congrats on the stated success of your book in French. I hope your success continues with the English version.

Best of luck.

Brian


message 11: by Antara (new)

Antara Mann | 4 comments Antara wrote: "Stéphane wrote: "Would you buy this book?
Should I mention the success of French edition to attract on US readers?
What else should I have to mention?

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RSEOCW8"

About t..."


Very well said Brian, problem is that English is not my native language. Shocked? My manuscripts are being translated by a translator and then being edited by professional, native English editors. I think the point with "were echoing" vs "echoed" is that I mean continuation with the activity.
As you ca imagine, I don't have your language skills and probably will never have them unless I live 20 years in an English speaking country.


message 12: by Ed (new)

Ed Morawski I have to say I'm of a similar mind with G.G. - I refuse to read series. And the fact that it's only 100 or so pages makes it worse for me.

Why not just combine it all into one book and charge a little more? Then I would definitely consider it since it's an interesting premise.


message 13: by Jan (new)

Jan Hurst-Nicholson (janhurst-nicholson) | 1 comments Antara wrote: "Would you buy this book?
I plan making this title permafree. If the book is on a free promo or permafree, would you download it and read it?
http://amzn.to/1wfIUe2"


This is a good resource for writing blurbs.

https://supervillainsomeday.wordpress...


message 14: by Antara (new)

Antara Mann | 4 comments You don't like the blurb? Can you recommend a good Fiverr gig for that?


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