One thing that always seems interesting to me is that an author’s writing style and their stories are not necessarily linked. I have heard many people say they cannot get through Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings because his writing style and descriptions are so verbose that they get bogged down while reading the books. Because of that, even after several attempts, they cannot read the novels. However, as I mentioned in an earlier post, Tolkien is one of my favorite authors, and I read the books fairly early on, and I admit, it may be that it has been so long since I read them the first time that I cannot remember my first reaction to the books, but I do know that Tolkien’s writing style was not enough to deter my finishing the book.
Another author, whom I also mentioned in the same earlier post, Terry Goodkind has a writing style that has grown a bit repetitive, perhaps in the last few novels. As such, there are little things that bother me every time I see them, but Goodkind’s stories and characters certainly make up for any elements of the writing that I find less than ideal. I have always been the kind of person who, if the story is good, I will read on to see how the story ends. Goodkind certainly has the stories and characters to make me count his Sword of Truth series as quite possibly my favorite series.
It always seems for me that the big motivation for whether or not I read a book is the tale. If I want to know what happens to the characters, then I will do what it takes to find out, and if that involves reading stories that may be dense or repetitive at times, then I will take the story for what it is. Certainly there are certain writing styles I prefer over others, but that does not mean the stories they accompany are something I am interested. This seems to hold true whether we are talking about books released this year or two hundred years ago.
What do you think? Is the writing style enough to attract or deter you from a book? Or is the story what draws you in?