Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Do You Name the Author? - A Reader University Post

By Stacy S. Jensen

This is the third post in a series of 12 ways to help authors (and your writing) by reading.  


I know most authors aren’t rich and famous. Heck, most people don’t even mention an author by name. I’m guilty of this too.
You’ve overheard this or been a party to that conversation about a book, right?
“You know the book about the sheep quitting?” {Can’t Sleep Without Sheep by Susanna Leonard Hill} or “That book where the kids are put in an arena to kill.” {The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins} Most comments are followed by “It’s on the tip of my tongue” or snapping fingers. The speaker can’t remember the title or the author’s name.
I’m sure many authors don’t mind that their name {or title} is forgotten. They simply appreciate that the reader remembers the story.
Not naming an author won’t break the universe, but it doesn’t help an author trying to get established. When I hear a title or an author mentioned, I often look up their other work. One mention, and suddenly I’m checking out multiple books. There’s value to naming an author to a potential reader.
This is one thing I will do this year — I will name authors and the titles of their books. For picture books, I’m trying to add the illustrators, too. To accomplish this, I will use Google or Amazon or my library’s catalog to complete a quick search. If I can’t remember the title and author or find it, I will bow out of a conversation in person or on social media. It’s early in the year, but so far I am on track.
Do you name an author when you talk about book titles?
Reading: I continue to read Divergent by Veronica Roth. I fear I may have a difficult time skipping over Roth’s next novel Insurgent, but I have The Book Thief by Markus Zusak next on my list. I know my list is so 2012 or 2013, but this is why I’m trying to read more. I’m behind!
(This post originally appeared on Stacy S. Jensen's blog on January 20, 2014)

About the Author: Stacy S.Jensen worked as a newspaper reporter and editor for two decades. Today, she writes picture books and revises a memoir manuscript. She lives in Colorado Springs with her husband and toddler.