Recently, a writer “liked” one of my blog posts. That doesn’t happen as often as you’d think, so I clicked on his name to find out more about him. He’s got three novels out, self published. I read his bio and LOVED it! The writing was excellent. It had wit, charm, a bit of sarcasm, and it was a joy to read. So I clicked on the link to his books. The first two didn’t really appeal to me, but the third book caught my attention. The synopsis of the book was written in the same style as the bio, with wit, sarcasm, and fabulous word-smithing. Excited that I’d found an awesome style, I bought the book (Kindle version).
The dream faded as chapter one sped by. That wonderful style I’d read in the bio and the book description were lacking in the text. The writing was fine–setting, characters, all that stuff was well done. But the wit, the sarcasm, the sense of humor, were conspicuously absent. I made it to chapter five before I gave up. The plot is fine. The characters are fine. But the humor I thought I’d find wasn’t to be found. I didn’t recover from that disappointment.
It’s ultra important to deliver what you promise to your readers. If the back-of-the-book blurb contains humor, there’d better be humor in chapter one. Conversely, if your book description is fast-paced with world-destroying stakes, there shouldn’t be page after page of slapstick humor. Or worse, puns. Reader disappointment is a killer.
I’m not going to tell you this author’s name because I have high hopes that he’ll discover (on his own) that his laid back, humorous bio style should be incorporated into his next book. And I will finish the one I bought. The story questions raised were enough to keep me interested, and I’ll probably end up liking the book. It just doesn’t have any humor in it.
Would that bug you the way it bugged me? Share your thoughts.