Monday, June 27, 2011

Moods and the Reader

Recently I’ve been reading a lot of thrillers. Nothing else seemed to hold my attention. In a few weeks I may feel like reading something less ominous and gripping — Jane Austen or P.G. Wodehouse, or something mind-improving such as an historical tome or even a textbook (unlikely). The point is, we all have reading moods, and these moods determine our reading choices. These moods can be affected by something as simple as the weather; in the summer I tend to go for cozies and lighter novels. In the winter, I might happily settle down with a trilogy like The Forsyte Saga, or even War and Peace.

While having these thoughts, it occurred to me that maybe — just maybe — agents and editors have similar reading moods. And what if the agent you’re querying about a thriller, is in a cozy mood, or vice-a-versa? Or what if the editor to whom your agent sends your noir manuscript is in the mood for a light-hearted romp? What then? Hmmm? Perhaps our rejections are simply the result of a passing mood. You know, when the rejection reads, “Nice, but not what we’re looking for,” they may be looking for it next winter when they are in a more somber mood. Or when the rejection reads, “Not for us,” they may simply mean not for us today, but tomorrow when my indigestion passes, I may be eager for it.

This revelation is not very helpful as far as getting your book published, but it may make you feel better to know that your work may not be at fault, it just hit the reader when they were in the wrong mood.

Robin Hathaway

No comments:

Post a Comment