This is a big ol’ peeve of mine. I’m talking HEP big.
A lot of it probably stems back to my college days when I rarely had time to read anything that wasn’t required, but even if I hadn’t majored in English, I’d still get irritated by the idea that one type of book is “better” than another.
1. I don’t care what you’re reading, it’s better than not reading.
2. Why is your book better than mine(, punk)?
When it comes to fiction, I find that there are two main types of readers: those who want to be edified and those who want a brief escape from reality.
The arguments between the two groups can get rather heated. The knowledge-seekers call the reality-escapees lowbrow pedestrians, and the reality-escapees call the knowledge-seekers elitist snobs, etc. *sighs*
I say it’s not that simple.
2. If you’re reading fiction, you’re reading to be entertained. Regardless of what your secondary objective is, your first priority is entertainment. Pretending otherwise is just silly. #notfoolinganyone
2. (I think) They’re just two different ways of trying to accomplish the same thing.
It’s the difference between the Thinkers and the Feelers.
I’m an escapist reader b/c I want to FEEL something. Whether it’s vicariously re-experiencing something like the thrill of first love or something that I’d never be able to do in real life (like SAVE THE WORLD), when I’m fully immersed in a good book, I’m feeling the same things the characters are feeling.
When someone dies, the loss is devastating. Or thrilling, as the case may be. I feel the dread as it builds towards a betrayal the MC and I both felt coming, but hoped against hope that we were wrong about. The elation that follows a victory, the fury at sabotage, the fear when a friend is in danger, the relief when that same friend is safely returned . . . A good author can make me feel it all.
B/c I’m a Feeler.
It makes sense to me that a Thinker would only be able to achieve the same kind of thrill through gaining some new knowledge or insight.
But the pursuit is basically the same.
So can one really be better than the other?
And besides, I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’d rather be finding my next good read than wasting time arguing over why my way is better than yours. 🎶Why can’t we be friends?🎶
What about you? What do you most want out of the books you read? And isn’t it diversity that keeps things interesting?