Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Please hire me, Mr. Patterson

Please Hire Me, Mr. Patterson

James Patterson bashing is a favorite pastime on many writers’ discussion sites. Most of the criticisms aimed toward Mr. Patterson concern his: short chapters, his prolific additions to bookstore and library shelves, his use of co-authors, and his Spartan writing style. And let’s not forget his treatment of writing as a business.
Am I a James Patterson fan? I sure am. Do I read everything he and his stable of writers’ crank out? Of course not. Some of his latest branch-out novels are not for me, written in genres that I just don’t care for.  He is a bookstore, a library, a shelf of books. I stand in front of them and choose which I want to read as I would in any book-filled environment.
The purists would argue that Mr. Patterson’s books are crammed with non-literary, genre-based drivel. I would argue that what he generously produces is entertainment. Isn’t that what writing is all about? Obviously, there are droves of people out there who are skipping things like reality TV, Spider Solitaire, and discussing their day on Facebook, in order to be entertained by this author.
I shudder to think what these same people would have to say about me as an eBook author. They’d probably throw cloves of garlic at me if we met on the street!
John Locke and Joe Konrath, eBook proponents, who, like Mr. Patterson, believe in writing as a business, would certainly back me on this. They are also of the school of thought that believes an author must attack his writing as a business and also, that at the end of the day, books are entertainment.
If James Patterson placed a want ad on Goodreads, looking for someone to co-author his next suspense book, my resume would be in the mail instantly. In an author interview, he stated that he does a 50-page outline before he writes a novel.
Outlining my novels drives me crazy. Just think what I’d learn by fleshing out a novel from one of Patterson’s generous outlines. Did I say learn? Maybe I should have said earn. I doubt many of us would turn down an opportunity to profit from our writing or to pass up the fantastic publicity writing with Mr. Patterson would deliver.
There’s plenty of room for every genre and sub-genre in the universe of reading material as more and more people get into reading. And I do believe (close your ears, purists) that the advent of the eBook will bring more and more readers to feed from our giant trough of books.

1 comment:

  1. I agree that there's plenty of room for all genres and all writing styles. I like Patterson, but he's not one of my favorites, and lately I've been reading mysteries by authors such as Darcia Helle which I absolutely love! Love your blog and I'll be back!


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