1. MissIvy
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    MissIvy Member

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    What makes you buy a book?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by MissIvy, Dec 27, 2006.

    For me I first read the title. If it attracks me than I pull the book out from the shelf and turn to the back. I read a bit of what the story is about and if I am interested I take the final stage which is reading the first two sentences. If the first two sentences do not grab me then back it goes on the shelf.
    This all takes place in a matter of seconds. I might be putting down a great masterpiece but I take all of this into considersation when I write.
    Is the title attractive? Is that one paragraph describing the story intriging? Are those first words a grabber?

    Just wondering what grabs you?
     
  2. Max Vantage
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    Max Vantage Banned

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    Usually the security guard running after me as I'm stealing the book. :D


    If it's worthy of thievery then it's a pat on the back.
    If it's worthy to be bought then it's a compliment.

    But what gets me to buy a book is the idea if I have read a review and short synopsis. Then I don't care how the story opens up or what the opening sentences are like or even the length of said book.
    If it's good by my standards I'll be willing to make the journey to buy it in person or shop for it online.

    And if it's exceptional I'd buy the hardback at full price.
     
  3. Spherical Time
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    Spherical Time Contributing Member

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    These days, a recommendation is required for me to buy an author I haven't read before. Back in the day it was often an interesting cover blurb, or even just an interesting cover. Sometimes I'd read a little bit at the bookstore, and if it caught by fancy, I'd buy it.

    I still buy the books of authors that I like, because I feel that supporting their work is important.
     
  4. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I tend to stick with writers I've read before.

    For a new author, usually by word of mouth. That carries the most weight with me.

    Occasionally I go to a bookstore and browse. Cover, title, the back cover, and then I'll open up to the first 1/3 and read a few pages.

    Terry
     
  5. Sf Gr3y
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    Sf Gr3y Member

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    Wow, I'm almost exactly the same way. :eek:
     
  6. Crazy Ivan
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    Crazy Ivan Contributing Member

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    I have an extremely random process, but it has never let me down so far:

    Step 1) Go to a bookstore and browse.
    Step 2) Grab pretty much any book with an interesting title, cover, back, etc.
    Step 3) Read the synopsis and first few pages, then check the price tag and find out its way too expensive for you (At a 3-bucks-every-other-week allowance, pretty much everything is too expensive for me.)
    Step 4) Put it down and, within 12 hours, forget pretty much everything you saw.
    Step 5) Read some other junk for a month.
    Step 6) After a month or two, go to the library (Or Barnes and Noble if you've gotten more money) and, while searching for some other book completely, stumble across one of the books you came across earlier.
    Step 7) Pick it up, realize it is now within your grasp (Either because it's from the library or because you have more money) and grab it.
    Step 8) Go home and read it and instantly get turned on to the author/series/style/whatever.

    It's not so much a process as it is a chain of coincidences, but it has never let me down yet. It is the reason that I have discovered the Discworld series, the Hitchhiker's Series, Peter Abrahams, Neil Gaiman, Eoin Colfer, Outernet, David Lubar, Life of Pi, James Patterson, Neal Shusterman, The Young Wizard Series, Orson Scott Card, and pretty much every single other book, series, and author that has shaped my personal thoughts and style.
    It's like the Great Deity of Great Books shoves me together with a bunch of other books and the result is perfection.
     
  7. Fiesty Kel
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    Fiesty Kel Member

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    Its all about title and cover for me, front and back.
     
  8. Sapphire
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    Sapphire Senior Member

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    For me, I read the title, pull it off the shelf, read the back, and if its interesting, I flip to the middle. If there's something in the middle that looks good, then I'm like 'oh this looks good'.
     
  9. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i do about what you do, ivy... with the added bit of first looking for names of authors whose work i've enjoyed in the past... but, if a title catches me, i'll give unknown-to-me names a shot... at least as far as the process you laid out above...
     
  10. Naomi Star
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    Naomi Star Member

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    It may or may not have a catchy title, but if it's a category I like--let's say, for example, fiction/romance, then I'll browse. If a title with its cover (yea I know the sayin about not judging a book--oh well) attracts me, I'll pick it up and turn it over. If it has a brief but very intruiging storyline, I'll flip through and read some of the writing style. If everything adds up in favor, I'll get it.

    I wonder if I'm too picky?
     
  11. Sandy
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    Sandy Member

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    I've been very lucky with the bookstore that I go to. One of the clerks working there is a reader of fantasy, and has suggested many books for me to read in the genre, and I wasn't disappointed by any of them. But when I wiped out the fantasy section, I switched to romance and had no help. Reading the back covers of the books help to tell if your interested in the story line. Now I have a dozen favorite authors in both genres.


    Sandy
     
  12. Daniel
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    Daniel I'm sure you've heard the rumors. Founder Staff Contributor

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    Off the top of my head, I can think of a few reasons.

    1) I've read the book from getting it from the library and liked it, so I buy it. I usually do this if the book is in a trilogy or series.

    2) If It's highly recommended by someone I deem has a good taste in writing.

    3) If it's a bestseller that sounds interesting.
     
  13. gavtheevilgenius
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    gavtheevilgenius Member

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    I look and see how thick the book is...my attention span isnt what it used to be :) I normally look at the backs of the book if it sounds intresting I might open the old wallet up. Not a complicated man really :)
     
  14. Gateship
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    Gateship Member

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    I will buy anything by an author I've read (and liked) previously. I own an awful lot of Eddings...

    I'm a magpie and attracted by pretty covers. Then I read the blurb. If it's one of a series, I'm far more likely to buy - I have a thing for fantasy series.

    Though I've given up on the Wheel of Time.
     
  15. Heather Louise
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    Heather Louise Contributing Member Contributor

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    sometimes i read books by an author i allready know and like, but mainly i read what my dad brings home fomr the libary. if he goes and gets three books for example, and he leaves them lying around, then i will pick it up and start reading it. but i hate going and browsing for a book because i never really like the sound of the blurb, so unless i know one that i particually want, then i let my dad chose them. lol.
    heather
     
  16. Magnum Opus
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    Magnum Opus New Member

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    I too, like Gateship, like the covers, and though the old adage is that I shouldn't judge books this way, I do it anyway.

    The blurb though is not usually my feature to go buy, rather, I will open the book up to the 3rd or 4th chapter and see what is going on, and if it catches me, I buy it.

    I also like to buy books buy my favorite authors, but generally I will buy books that are by people I am completely unfamiliar with, and more often than not, I am pleasantly surprised.

    Plus I just like reading, so I usually buy anything in a book store. Of course this means I have accumulated some things I consider crap, but hey, you can't like it unless you read it, right?

    Who knows I may get a little older, wiser, or acquire a different point of view, and enjoy that book.
     
  17. elfdragonlord
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    elfdragonlord Member

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    The genre, the cover, the blurb on the back - or sometimes I've read about the author's work and that encourages me to check it out.
     
  18. happysmiley474
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    happysmiley474 New Member

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    people say 'dont judge a book by its cover', but its hard not to do that, isnt it?
     
  19. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    It is hard when the cover looks so tempting. I generally look for any Stephen King novels I'm yet to add to my collection. I tend to buy them in their Nel published form, which has THE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER written across the top followed by his name, an intriguing picture, and then the title of the novel. I think they're excellent quality. :D
     
  20. Gannon
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    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Many Things,
    - Word of Mouth
    - Price
    - Cover
    - Review
    - Previous Purchases by same Author
    - Purchase by genre
    - Promotion
    - Advertisment
    - Cult Status
    - Recommendation
    - Reading Lists

    But most importantly - impulse. When the heft of some tome just feels right.
     
  21. Traci
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    Traci Member

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    Length of the book is the key thing for me right now. I speed read when I get really interested and can go through books rather quickly. In order to make it worth the money, it has to be at least over 300 pages.. or part of a series so that I know there is more to come. If I must get invested into a story I want to know that its going to be a good meal..not just an appetizer.

    This is in general- I'll read about anything but what I actually purchase for myself is subject to greater scrutiny.

    maybe we should put up a book recommendation section by genre in here.
     

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