QUALITY VS QUANTITY
This is a topic of conversation between a lot of my reader friends lately. Maybe the past year or so, as we’ve seen so many authors start to put out a lot of books per year. A lot more than we would’ve ever thought possible years back. Some of that is just the ease of self publishing that has given authors the ability to get their stories to the masses much quicker by streamlining the process in some cases. But we always circle back to one general thing… Do we feel the books they are writing now have the same quality standard than before? Or are we seeing a lack of quality because they are striving to hit that magical number of yearly releases (whatever they feel that is in their mind)?
For this example, I’m talking about authors that have ramped up their release schedules in recent years from what they used to release years ago. I cannot begin to tell you how many of them I’ve stopped reading that used to be 5 star reads (or close to) for me. Some are still very popular in the market and once in a while I’ll say to myself “maybe you should give it another shot” only to be disappointed all over again. Recycled stories, weak plots, weak character development, or even just following in with trope trends and recycling that. It makes me a little angry because underneath all that I can still sense a good story that just needed a little more love. I’m not saying lack of quality due to spelling mistakes. I mean, plot and character growth, and depth. The things that pull me in and boost a story from just ok to wow! I think a lot of these things could been addressed spending a little more time on crafting that book, and when I say it makes me a little angry is because this happens so often with authors I like lately. Same thing has been happening to most of my friends I’ve talked to about this topic. So now I want to hear from you!
For me, it’s all about the quality. If that author average rating starts sliding down into a 3 star average because the stories could’ve been so much better had the author sat with the plot and the characters a bit more, dug a little deeper, and gave us an all around better story, then you’ve lost me. There are so many books out there to read that I just don’t want to spend time reading something that turned into a disappointment (and yes, that is because of my expectations).
Are there authors that can put out 4+ books a year and craft an enjoyable story? Yes, absolutely! Maybe even excellent stories and I can’t get my hands on them fast enough. So I’m definitely making a general statement that has some (very few) exceptions. To me, those authors are the minority. I think as readers, basically consumers, we are the ones driving the market and that comes with a responsibility. We are the ones demanding quantity and the authors are just giving us what we seem to be asking for. I probably have higher expectations than some, I get that, but I think we should be asking for better quality and not be so concerned with the quantity of books we get by any author and how long our wait time is between releases. It’s hard to make the decision to give up reading authors that used to be such a staple of my reading time, but it’s something I’ve started doing. What are your thoughts and experiences on this?