#IWSG – Book Interrupt

My minimal presence in the writing community continues, but IWSG keeps me in touch. So, this is an attempt at my monthly Insecure Writer’s Support Group post – with the usual raft of flimsy excuses.

As I keep saying, the encouragement of the Ninja Captain avoids me missing a month as he’s such a stalwart follower. Without IWSG, my writing would be post-it notes. Thanks Alex J. Cavanaugh for creating the Insecure Writer’s Support Group where you can find better answers to this month’s challenging question.

I need to remind myself the question is optional, but why not attempt an answer. 

January 6 question – Being a writer, when you’re reading someone else’s work, what stops you from finishing a book/throws you out of the story/frustrates you the most about other people’s books?

However, my health problems have seen me struggle to read as I once did. A physical book or a Kindle has become hard to access in my normal haunts – yes, including a guy’s retreat.

I keep trying audio, although the dogs barking makes that hard – even with the headphones my wife bought me. But I’m rereading a classic SF novel at the moment, and the dogs are quieter. Why? Maybe as it’s an amazing read – profound and engrossing.

Anyway, the question.

The most recent book I struggled with – and stopped before reading Book 2 of the trilogy -was due to repetition. Although the plot was good as was the writing, the author kept using battle scenes with structure and phrases from earlier scenes. Too copy and paste.

Poor or weird grammar will lead to me abandoning a book. Bad editing tends to be noticeable in samples meant to encourage me to buy, so I don’t – and this kind of abandonment is rare. However, if a story hooks me and I then start finding errors, these mount up and make me struggle – usually through to the end. Sometimes, an author attempts to write with inventive grammar or language, which can work but sometimes fails. Maybe I missed the point.

More often the fault is mine as I read something and want to know more. My mind creates a rabbit-hole, which can become a warren if I get tempted online to explore. A place, a person, a quote – anything can trigger me to stop reading and wonder to know more. That’s my probing mind, and not the author’s failure to provide footnotes, appendices, or obscure bits of backstory. Of course, I loved Tolkien’s Middle Earth sagas for just that.

The real question is: where are the roadblocks in my writing?

Repetition – Ragbag – Rabbit-holes – Roadblocks


The awesome co-hosts for the January 6 posting of the IWSG are Ronel Janse van Vuuren , J Lenni Dorner, Gwen Gardner Sandra Cox, and Louise – Fundy Blue! 

How can I be repetitive asking you to agree these guys are the best? Especially as they all have concerns, fears, and insecurities. But they struggle on, so ticker-tape applause for all of them – plus toasts with the best brew available. They are truly the best.

Purpose of IWSG: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time – and return comments. This group is all about connecting!

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG.

Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience, or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something.

For more on the IWSG monthly post and links to other participants visit:


11 thoughts on “#IWSG – Book Interrupt

  1. Yes, we have similar problems that lead us to abandon books.

    I’m not going anywhere near Dune a second time. I read it in its first edition (as you probably did too.) With all the hype since, I’ll leave well alone. I find even revisiting early Anne MacCaffrey shows its age…. 🙂

    Happy new year and lots of love to spread through it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Common reasons, I suspect, Jemima. Now I’ve move to audio, the main issue is falling asleep while listening.

      Dune on a second ‘read’ proved worth doing. As I posted on Goodreads: I read ‘Dune’ first as a teenager, fifty years ago, and it captured my imagination with its depiction of a galaxy ruled by spice and greed. Although the ecological message was not lost on a burgeoning green, it’s on this second reading – listening – that the full impact of its ecological and political plotlines struck home……. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/991909.Dune


  2. You’ve managed a few writerly tasks–and I thank you! I agree about those roadblocks. I get hung up on bad writing, though usually I’ll finish the book but then read no more by that author. That makes me think all the harder about maybe re-editing my first book or two…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I hope you find a good format to enjoy books on once again. I’m seeing quite a few bloggers struggling to find a comfortable reading format today. I keep wondering if the Amazon Kindle Cloud Reader is well-known enough, as it looks much like a webpage. There must be some way to help more readers to be able to read again.

    I hope your New Year is going well. I only read and reviewed 23 books last year, but my goal for this year is 30. My other goals are to publish another fiction book in 2021, do the Blogging from A to Z Challenge in April, and increase the number of authors helped by Operation Awesome.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hey, Roland! It breaks my heart to know how hard you struggle each and every day. You make me laugh, though ~ I disappear down rabbit holes frequently too. That’s probably what sidetracks me most when reading a book. But I always come back to the book. Books like Umberto Eco’s “Baudolino” take me forever to read because the rabbit holes are numerous. Keep fighting the good fight, my friend! I’m rooting for you.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you Roland for this post. Never read the Dunes series … I wonder what has put me off ! Love your four R’s reasons. Happy New year. Lots of creativity and happy moments. Take care.🧸🎊🥳🎈🦋🌬

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I know what you mean about the rabbit holes. Hey, I had to look up 25th Amendment yesterday and then and then and . . . My reasons for closing a book are pretty much the same as yours. If it bothers me too much, I quit. Life is too short to read bad books.

    Liked by 1 person

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