Judging books

Monday, March 5, 2007

I hate judging other authors' books, but the Rita contest requires those who enter to judge in other categories. That means I will get books not necessarily in a genre I love. I've devised a system where I have set a bottom score for any book that meets its genre's requirements. In other words, if it contains the elements a reader would expect, then the book automatically has a baseline score [and no, I won't disclose the number]. Then I add/subtract for inventiveness, voice, the flow of the writing, motivation, etc. But bottomline, my final score evolves around the emotion...did I laugh, cry or sigh? [since I entered romantic suspense I don't get to evaluate whether the book kept me on the edge of my seat ]. Did I care if the heroine and hero did end up together?

This year I was lucky as I had two books that had me laughing out loud at times, but the two best had me sobbing my head off. I found two authors whose talent amazed me. So however the overall results come out, I count myself lucky as I got to read seven authors whose work I appreciated on different levels. Maybe they won't be Rita finalists, but each and every one hit their marks in their respective genres. :) Carol