The next book you buy


If you saw my previous post, you’ll know that last week I was struggling to wade through a novel I was supposed to be reading for a book club. I dawdled and hoped for another to take its place and quite magically the other members voted for a different book.

But this one’s worse. Not badly written, just more taxing (think stream of consciousness while simultaneously medieval). I keep looking at the kindle % sign wanting to thumb my way forward. But I’m trying to stick with it. After all, it’s a bestseller.

Literary agent Jonny Geller recently asked what makes a book a bestseller in a TED talk. His presentation is peppered with anecdotes from writers and publishers. Many factors, he says, contribute to how much a book sells:

A predictable start to the story

The author’s voice, their craft

The ability to create a space for the reader to fill in the gaps

A theme which answers zeitgeisty questions such as ‘What do people most currently fear?’

If you want to see his TED talk, the link is below.

For me, a novel can be set anywhere, be about anything, be long, short, written in couplets but if I am emotionally connected to what I am reading, I’ll stick with it to the end.

Click here to watch the TED talk

What makes you read on? Your comments as always are welcome.




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