Monday, 25 May 2020

Would You Rather Book Edition

In today's blog, I'm following a tag from Rowena Andrews for a Would You Rather set of reader questions. I enjoyed reading her answers and am looking forwards to doing some thinking about the sort of things  I don't think about too often. Without further ado:

Would you rather read from a hardback, paperback or E-book?

Paperback. While it's not a massive deal to me, and I'd read a book printed on the back of a can label if it came to it, there's just something about a paperback that feels easier to read for me.

Would you rather crack the spine of a Paperback book or ruin a hardback’s dust jacket?

Honestly, I treat my books like crap, and therefore would blithely do either by accident with little more than annoyance at myself after the fact. Since I tend to lose hardback dust jackets really quickly, ruining them is probably the correct answer.

Would you prefer info dump on a world/magic system to a drip-feed technique?

It really depends on the book/writing style - that's what Rowena said and I agree. I probably trend a little towards info dump largely because I tend to find that when done badly, drip-feed just feels like reaaaaally long info dumps for me. If it's not being done that well, get it out of the way. If it's done very well, then... both? Give me the basics of it and then drip feed all the juicy details. If an author's done it well, then give me all the info!

Would you rather jump on board with a book series and wait to see if it gets traction or wait for a successful book series to be brought to your attention?

While the latter is how it is about 99% of the time, I prefer the former and love getting a chance to shout about books where I got to do that and where they should be brought to attention. The Goddess Project! The Woven Ring! The Emperor's Edge! Heart Blade! Sir Edric! The Eagle's Flight! The Thief Who Pulled on Trouble's Braids! You might notice I've yet to get in on a big publishing house story on the ground floor. The closest I got was RJ Barker's Age of Assassins and while I enjoy talking it up, I feel like it's already a successful book series.

Would you rather have dinner with your favourite character or author?

Well, having dinner with Sir Terry Pratchett would imply some rather startling and/or worrying things about mortality so...

It's a tricky one. Guy Gavriel Kay is very into his cocktails and seems to have an endless amount of good ancedotes; Aliette de Bodard posts recipes on her website, which is a good sign; RJ Barker has a wicked sense of humour. Not sure about Jim Butcher though.

However Sam Vimes is ridiculously rich, loves food with burnt crunchy bits, and Sybil is a fantastic host. Mat Cauthon would be fine fun as long as I don't let him talk me into dicing. Granny Weatherwax, however, would be an awful person to have dinner with.

Anyway. Sir Pterry if I don't have to die to do it, Sir Sam if I do.

Would you rather have a soft magic system or a hard magic system?

If I have to pick one, then the likelihood is I don't really care about the ins and outs of the magic system - if I want that, I'll read an RPG rulebook - and therefore I'll go with soft simply because hard means a lot of time explaining something I didn't really want explained. Just don't do any deus ex machina and we're good. That said, in an ideal world, make the central plot altering parts of the system hard and leave the rest of it soft and fuzzy.

Would you rather read duologies, trilogies or standalone books?

The longer the series the better if I'm enjoying myself. I love a good standalone, but not as much as I love a nice long series.

Would you rather read self-published or traditionally published authors for 2 years straight?
Trad published for two simple reasons.

a) I can talk with far more people about them
b) I'm an avid re-reader and my list of trad published authors I love to read over and over is far, far longer

It's not a reflection of quality at all, as I think the best in self-published matches the best in trad published and honestly, might fit my taste a little better.

Would you rather be stuck in your favourite fantasy/sci-fi world or your favourite fantasy/sci-fi book?

Not sure I get this question as, a few books apart in fantasy aside, surely the world gives you all the benefits of the book but with far more room to explore. I guess if you pick a portal fantasy, you can kind of go home whenever you want? In any case, world. Let's be honest, this one isn't exactly a draw right now.

Would you rather be allowed to read one book series (as it’s published) or all the books by one author?

Again, surely all the books by one author covers the book series and more anyway? A few co-writtens aside that is.

Would you rather read fantasy or science-fiction?

Fantasy. I'm one of those fantasy fans that would rather see the two genres decoupled if they had their druthers.

Would you rather have your favourite book adapted into a film or into a television series?

Leave it the hell alone, thank you all the same, and go write something fresh and new meant for TV. Adaptation-mania annoys me at the best of times, and when my favourite series is currently being adapted for TV and is being butchered in the process, it is not the best of times. I'm excited for authors who get a much needed boost from the process, but for the actual adaptation? I'm more excited to eat a nice piece of stale brown bread.

Would you rather have to reread your least favourite book every month, or never read your favourite book again?

That's a monstrous question. I guess never my favourite book again because there's a lot of other good books and all the candidates are more or less locked into my memory, where as forcing myself to read books I don't like is actively bad for my mental health. But boy would I be unhappy about this.

Would you rather secretly love a book everyone else hates, or secretly hate a book everyone else loves?

The latter, quite comfortably. There's a very long list of popular fantasy books that do very little for me already and I don't talk about them much because I don't see much point being negative. So I already do that. And I don't like being secretive about books I love!

Would you rather dog-ear your book, or never be able to mark your place?

I'm perfectly content to dog-ear and to rely on memorizing my place, so either works. I guess the latter?

Would you rather listen to your favourite book as an audiobook narrated by the worst narrator ever, or never read it again?

Do you know what - I've never actually listened to an audiobook. I prefer my information written and my ears free for music. But still, a listen is small price to pay, and I suspect I'd probably just tune it out anyway.

Would you rather have a disappointing end/unfulfilled cliffhanger, or lose your favourite character?

Great character deaths are the greatest endings. Kill away!

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