Wednesday, September 08, 2021

Signs of a Good Story


How do you know that you’ve read or watched a particularly good story? For me there are a number of signs.

 - I’ve read a lot of good books or short stories over the years. They all leave me with a satisfied feeling. But I know it’s a particularly good one when I close the book with a contented sigh.

 - If I have the urge to tell others about the book/story, that they should read or watch it, that’s also one of my signs.

 - If I think about the story for days or weeks afterward, that’s a well put together story. I recently watched “Cruel Summer”, a 10 episode TV show that aired on FreeForm TV before going to Hulu. It’s a she said/she said story. The main characters are two high school girls. One is kidnapped and, when she’s found, accuses the other one of seeing her in captivity and doing nothing about it. The accusation rips the town and families apart. Who do you believe? By the end of the show, everything is revealed. There are lots of twists and turns. I still think about it off and on.

 - In his post on Monday, Thomas talked about emotional connections. How people had come up to him and told him they’d felt an emotional connection with the book. That’s a sign of a good book.

 - If I feel the need to walk up to an author at a conference or send them a message via Facebook or Twitter that I liked the story, that is a sign that I’ve read a good story. I’m not one to reach out to people much, so if you get email or some message from me that I liked your story/book, that means I really liked your story/book.

What about you all? What are signs to you that you’ve read/watched a good book/story?


Susan D said...

Yes, as you said, if it keeps coming back to me. If I keep rethinking how it was resolved.

And if I find myself returning to the characters, thinking, and then what happened...?

Sybil Johnson said...

That's interesting about thinking then what happened...? I've done this myself. I also do a lot of what ifs. There are many times in "Cruel Summer" that things could have turned out drastically different if a different choice was made by someone. Still thinking about that.