Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Rules of Seven

For some reason when I think of sevens, it reminds of me of how many times we are suppose to forgive someone, so please forgive me for the words that I'm about to show you (sorry self-deprecating moment).

I was tagged by Struggling Writer to go to either page 7 or 77 of my manuscript, count down 7 lines, then copy the next 7 lines into your blog.

So here it goes.

Lind leaned his cane against the railing and lowered himself down beside his brother. “Oliver you take everything so literal. Of course you can tell your family. We’re all Defenders.” Unlike his brothers and father, Oliver refrained from reminding Lind that he was only an Honorary Defender, since there had been extenuating circumstances regarding his last task, circumstances that had resulted in a lost limb and a burnt face. Oliver had never been privy to the details and knew better than to ask.

“Then why didn’t anyone tell me about their tasks?”

“You weren’t a Defender yet. When you complete your task, we can tell you what we had to do.Come 

on Ollie, everyone’s waiting.” He grabbed onto the railing and pulled himself up. 

Sorry, you got an extra line, but I didn't want to leave you hanging.

Actually this exercise got me thinking. So many times, I've flipped a book open and read an excerpt as though reading one paragraph will entice me to buy the book. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.

How about you? Do you read a part of the book before deciding to purchase it?


Unknown said...

I was interested by how the injury lead to honorary Defender status so I guess the Seven line snippet worked.

When I'm selecting a book I read the start of page 49. I buy it if the text draws me in at that point.

Have you thought about using "propped" instead of "leaned" in your first sentence? ;)

Carolyn V said...

I love it Patti! It's so interesting!

I flip open a book and read a line all the time. ;) So fun.

Felicity Grace Terry said...

Intrigued, I want to read more.

Apart from the outer cover/inner page blurb I can't say I've ever actually opened a book and read any of its contents before deciding or whether or not to buy it.

Melissa Amateis said...

I always read the beginning of a book before I buy it (fiction anyway) to see if I like the writer's style, etc.

Heidi Willis said...

Nicely written!

I tend to read the first pages. If I can't get through those, I don't buy. It's a huge burden to think about when I write - those first sentences and paragraphs have such importance. Often it takes me days to get past writing them... from there it gets easier.

strugglingwriter said...

Thanks for doing this. Well done.

I rely heavily on the synopsis of a novel in deciding if I want to buy it. I do read excerpts, however, when those are available.


Unknown said...

Very intriguing, Patti. And great writing.

I'm bad for checking out the writing before I buy a book. I basically don't. I used to download the first chapter from a book to see if I'll like it, but I can't get it off my iPod when I do that. So I don't do it anymore. I rely on work of mouth when buying books. :)

Connie Keller said...

My daughter does this all the time before she reads a book. She has it down to a science--she checks very exact places in a novel and reads a page or two from these spots (what can I say she's a mathematician and does everything with precision) and then makes a decision whether to read the book or not. I, on the other hand, can hardly force myself to read the book blurb for fear it will "spoil the story for me."

Often, she picks the books, and we both read them. :)

Jessie Oliveros said...

Great job, Patti. I remember this scene. By the way, I have about one-third of my book left to second-edit. So, yay. Be excited.

Name: Holly Bowne said...

Ooooh, a most intriguing excerpt! Thanks for the extra line. :o)

And yes, I do sometimes, maybe even often, flip open the book to a random page in addition to reading the cover copy.

Jessica Nelson said...

I didn't realize you write fantasy type books. :-) Yes, alot of times reading a paragraph helps me decide if something is interesting or not. I never realized until I started writing how unfair that is to the author. lol

Carol Riggs said...

Fun excerpt! I usually read the FIRST page of a book before deciding to buy/get it, but not a snippet from the middle. I don't want to learn anything ahead of time! :)