7 Questions With Reader & Reviewer Antonela
Meet Antonela, an educated professional and avid reader with more than 2400 books in three different languages read in a little over two decades. Going through her reading history there are many different phases and genres but in the last five years, she has slipped into the romance genre.
Antonela explains it as a need for something hopeful and joyful in comparison to her everyday serious and legal reading stuff. Once she discovers that all-consuming book whether is character driven, moving or simply a feelgood read she tries to shout it out to everyone on Goodreads and Twitter where she found her people.
She has a huge passion for reading but as you know, reading is a solitary sport so come and chat books with her on Goodreads and Twitter where she says she doesn’t take herself too seriously and neither should you.
For the ones of you who are new to my blog, I’m Esther, writer, content creator for authors and massive nerd. If you’re interested to know all the tips & tricks surrounding the process From Writing To Publishing Your Novel, you’re only a click away. For more goodies, articles and giveaways, please consider subscribing to my Newsletter.
Esther Rabbit: What are your favorite genres as a reader and what authors made you fall in love with reading?
My favorite genre is romance. It can be contemporary, paranormal, suspense, new adult, dark or historical. I choose what to read depending on what mood I’m in. I don’t shy away from other genres like the occasional biography, classical literature or crime mystery but I have to say horror is my limit.
My love of books and reading turned into a long-lasting relationship and yes, many years later we are still going strong, despite some bumps and bruises. So it is hard to name a time when that love started but there are certainly some authors that cemented that bond. JK Rowling, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Kristen Ashley, Penny Reid, Ilona Andrews to name a few authors who are responsible for my love of reading.
Esther Rabbit: When you start a new book, what are the key elements that pull you into the story?
Relatable characters, exciting and engaging plot line, sarcastic writing and strong heroines are my kryptonite but it is hard to be sure what book magic an author adds to hook me in. I’m a very curious person by nature so I often read a book about subjects that I know very little of.
But at the end of the day, familiarity and emotional connection is something that I search in the story and what eventually brings me back to read it again. Romance is a genre which has empowerment, joy, heart, humanity, love and a bunch of fun hence why I read it.
Esther Rabbit: I know that you read for plenty of self-published authors, so without naming names, what are the top issues you’ve encountered?
I never look at the publisher when I pick out a book. Just to put that out there. It is not a deciding factor for me. But I have to say that a long time ago, in the Middle Ages (lol) when I was younger and there was no social media or before I joined Goodreads I didn’t even know about self-publishing.
And what are the tools that became the deciding factor for self-publishing and spreading books to the masses? I love that there are so many choices to be made and that decision is on the reader. Only now in these cases, the author has the burden of promoting their work but if the book is good, word of mouth promotion that readers on these sites will do is priceless.
The obvious reason or issue of self-published books is that those books are often poorly edited or written in genre or sub-genre that is in demand on the market and that makes them generic and shallow. Just because you are writing about a trending topic doesn’t guarantee a financial success.
To me, the authentic and new voice is what describes a self-published author. An author who is free in writing. Also, an important thing to point out only publishing books is not enough. A little investment in the cover, blurb, and author social presence well before publishing will do wonders.
Esther Rabbit: Is there any difference between traditionally published and self-publish authors when it comes to the quality of the manuscript?
Not really. I think that stigma is been lifted. Or at least in most cases. I have mixed experiences on both sides. I ‘m always in awe of indie authors who do all the work themselves and are very successful.
The hard work they put into making quality content is not unnoticed. Mariana Zapata, Karina Halle, Alessandra Torre, Elle Kennedy, Amy Hamon, Meghan Quinn, Jay Crownover , Kennedy Ryan, Paola Dangelico all who are or were self- published and all are very popular in the romance genre. And my favorite books of theirs are self- published.
Esther Rabbit: When giving an author feedback, do you also make suggestions on certain areas they can improve?
Only if they ask or if it is that kind of review. When beta reading it is kind of implied. But otherwise, no. I do find I have more tips to give to a debut author. I find myself more confident and wanting them to have a better shot with future books.
With more experienced authors I just give an honest review. I don’t feel like I have much advice to give them as I’m sure they know what they are doing. I ‘m just an avid reader and if there is something in my review that will benefit their future work, great… if not, great again.
Esther Rabbit: Do you also follow trends when it comes to reading?
Not really. But when the market is filled with certain types of books you don’t have a choice. For example, in romance, as that is the genre I read the most, every once in a while comes a trope that seems everybody is writing about. As I said previously I’m very curious so if everybody is reading a certain book, okay it happens, I will cave and read it.
Just to see what is the hype about. I was never good with following expectations or doing things other people do so that is why I will have a hard time reading the book everyone is reading but it happens. With time and many books read under my belt I kind of know what to read and which books to stay away from. I don’t care what the trend is. Trends come and go.
Everybody learns that lesson -not every book that everyone loves you will love and vice versa. Without sounding preachy or patronizing I would advise everyone to read whatever they like. With so many books and so little time who can allow to be bothered about anything?
Esther Rabbit: Is it tough going out of your reading comfort zone and exploring genres you’re not such a big fan of?
Reading in its essence is a comfort for me. I don’t like change in life anyway so this is always a huge challenge for me. But how do we otherwise grow without thinking, reading, seeing another side? Also, that kind of book is always great for discussion with my book friends. But I should point out I don’t do it often.
Are you in the Writing Industry?
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And if you’re a fan of Paranormal Romance, check out Lost in Amber:
“A new Interplanetary Alliance ambassador on an earthbound mission.
A handful of genetically altered humans to be rescued.
Meeting her changed everything.“