Do You Know When to Let Go?
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Guys, I has the guilt and the frustration right now.
I'm conflicted on when is the precise moment when to decide that a book is just not for me. It really feels like back in high school, breaking up with that really cute, really nice boy who turned out to be kind of predictable and doesn't have any standout qualities...
But could POTENTIALLY make you happy...
BUT you're just so unsure that you don't want to waste anymore time on it...
(I've never actually gone through this hypothetical, analogical scenerio, but I've read about it!)
It's so hard for me to put down a book in which I've already invested time and money. It's equally hard to continue turning pages when your eyes glaze over and it's been 15 minutes and you've looked at the same sentence 20 times. Giving up, to me, feels like I'm not being fair to the author. What if they have something special in store several pages down the line? I know that I could pick up a book I'd be more interested in, but what if something MINDBLOWINGLY AMAZING happens within the next 200 pages?! And I miss out on it? And then all my friends are talking about "OMG can you BELIEVE that one part of Said Book?! It changed my life! I can solve ALL the world's problems now!"
I realize this is highly unlikely. But that's how my mind works. I'm super enthusiastic about books, as are we all, and I love to pick out the good things in the books I read. So how do you know when to say goodbye? I've only DNFed 3 books in 2010.
I asked a couple other bloggers via Twitter and here's what they had to say:
Tara from Fiction Folio
"I have only stopped reading one book. If I start it, I have to finish it.
Tara from Hobbitsies
"I hate giving up. If I don't like a book, I'll put it down and come back to it. Usually my mood affects how I like what I read."
Kristi from The Story Siren
"I have a 100 page rule. I used to feel more guilty [about giving up]."
Kate from Literary Explorations
"I've rarely given up on a book, but I think if I wasn't liking it halfway through then I'd give up and read something better."
Jamie from The Perpetual Page Turner
"I have such a hard time not finishing a book.. but lately I give it about 100 pages, depending on how long the book is."
Jami from YA Addict
"I have a 5 chapter rule."
Melanie from Reclusive Bibliophile
"I usually give it a few chapters, say 50 pages-ish, and then I give up if I'm not into it. I feel a little guilty jumping ship, but then I glance over at my TBR pile. I just try to remind myself that not every book is for every reader and then move on to one that hopefully will be for me."
Annette from Annette's Book Spot
"Usually 50 or so. But if it's a longer book, or one I THINK I should like, I give it longer."
So there it is. It's good to hear what other readers think, but it doesn't lessen the guilt for me. I think the more that the TBR pile grows (and it will, that wily minx!) the less guilty I will feel about letting go and moving on.
Melanie said it best when she told me: "You'll just have to decide what feels worse: guilt or boredom."
So what do you guys think? Do you have a hard time giving up on a book? Do you feel guilty about doing so? Or is giving up not even an option?