The disgruntled reader who got their paws on an early copy of the last Sookie Stackhouse novel by Charlaine Harris has been on my mind a lot lately. Apparently, the sneaky reader plastered spoilers all over the internet. There have been lots of arguments of both sides of the fence, and I can see where everyone is coming for the most part. For the most part. What I have had the most trouble with is the fact that Ms. Harris is being threatened by some so-called fans because of the way she chose to end her series. HER series. THREATENED. Really? Get a life. If you don't like what someone writes, feel free to post a negative review (preferably after the book has actually been released, since, you know, duh). Also, if you simply must have it end the way you want it to end, it's called fan fiction. Lots of people do it. See, you can have your cake and eat it too. There's no need for psycho stalker threats. I'm sure your cats will love your alternate ending and will listen intently to every last word (especially if you're holding an open can of tuna while you read).
All the talk about how readers are dissatisfied with the way Harris ended the Sookie series (I honestly don't know, since I AM a big fan and I want to read it myself) reminds me of some of the feedback I've had for my series over the years. Here is where the slight ***SPOILERS*** come in. So if you haven't read my series, feel free to skip over this next paragraph...
My lovely sister, who is my very first beta reader, as she has a fancy pants English degree, called me after she finished reading GRAVEYARD SHIFT, the first book in my Lana Harvey, Reapers Inc. series. "I feel so jipped," she said. "Where's the sex? You cut the scene off right as it's getting good!" Well, I, uh.... So I picked up a few books on writing sex scenes. Yeah, they make those. I read enough Laurell K. Hamilton and J.R. Ward that you wouldn't think I would need a set of instructions, but it never hurts to read something more technical on the subject. So I did. And I put some sex in the next book, POCKET FULL OF POSIES. Not a ton, but a few choice scenes that my sister found satisfactory. However, my sister is (thankfully) not the only person who reads my series. I received a couple of emails from readers who wanted to know why I had added sex to the mix. They liked how my story was more focused on plot and action. But, of course, there were other emails from readers who were really glad to see the romance heat up and play a bigger part in the story. What's a writer to do? By the time I began working on the third book, FOR THE BIRDS, I was really sweating over this issue. How was I going to keep all my readers happy? Then it finally dawned on me. This is MY series. I should write how I want the story to go. If people like it, then great! If they don't, well, I hope they find something that they do enjoy reading. It's really as simple as that. Besides, you can't please everyone, so you might as well please yourself. I'm happy with my work. I hope you are too, but if you're not, I'll do my best to wish you well instead of wishing you crabs.
As for Charlaine's last Sookie book.... there isn't a spoiler out there that could keep me from those pages. It's the last book in one of my favorite series. I don't care how she ends it, but I want to find out for myself.
Happy Reading. ♥