Quite often when I’m surfing message boards or reading reviews the writer will point out why a certain book didn't work for her; why she got pulled out of a story. Often times it is because the author has made a mistake with titles on a historical book or unwittingly plants a field of tomatoes in 12th century England or any number of small errors. But this can bother some readers to the point where they can no longer enjoy the book and/or if they continue to read it they become more and more irked. I came up with a brilliant explanation for why this bothers some readers and other readers hardly even notice this kind of thing. This brings me to the point of this post. I came up with theory on the type of readers there are.
The first type is a technical reader The technical reader is the kind of reader who is distracted by historical errors; they will notice the author included a scene that has tomatoes in 12th century England or has incorrectly addressed a duke/earl/marquis/baron. The technical reader enjoys a book less if there are errors. There is nothing wrong with this type of reader. If an author is going to write a historical novel, they should do their research to the best of their ability so they don’t get tripped up with technical errors. Improper punctuation can also make or break a book for the technical reader. Wallpaper romances are a no-no for the technical reader.
The other kind of reader is the artistic reader. This type of reader doesn’t generally notice or care if there are tomatoes in 12th century England. The artistic reader is not that aware of vegetation. The artistic reader thinks she knows the correct way to address the step mother of a duke but isn’t entirely sure and if it is done incorrectly, will probably not notice. The historical facts while important, in the long run aren’t nearly a book breaker to them. What is more important is while they are reading a book, are they taken away to another land or another time? This is what really matters the most to the artistic reader. Are they swept away by the writings of an author? Improper punctuation has been know to slip through unnoticed. Wallpaper romances, if written well, can sometimes work for them
Do you tend to rush through a story to get to the end, or do you stop along the way, smell the roses so to speak and take note of the inconsistencies. What makes a book a keeper can be vastly different between these two groups of readers so what kind of a reader are you?
Me, I’m an artistic type of reader. I did not know until not to long ago they didn't grow tomatoes in the middle ages.