Monday, April 30, 2018


Here's a question for all published authors: Do you enjoy reading your own books, maybe months or even years after they have been published?

I have heard some authors say that, after their books are published, they have no interest in ever reading them again. Not me. I enjoy re-reads of my own books. Maybe that's because I like spending time with my characters. (The continuing ones have become good friends.) Do other authors feel this way.

A favorite author of mine, Marilyn Meredith, once said, in answer to a question about whether or not she would continue writing both of her mystery series, "Yes, I want to find out what my characters are doing."  I have loved this answer and think of it as I read one of Marilyn's novels.  (We want to know too, Marilyn.)

Another reason I enjoy a re-read of my books is setting. I set my novels in specific Arkansas tourist destinations, and reading a novel set there is next best to an in-person visit to a favorite place.

Whatever the reason, here's something that proves what I've just said. During the past two years my husband and a former editor at the press who published my first five mystery novels in the "To Die For" series have worked together to re-issue my first two novels, print on demand. Both were originally offset print and, though one had gone into a second printing, both were out of stock, hence out of print. During the re-issue work I needed to make  updates in book text, and then read sample copies for accuracy. The first book re-issued, "Music to Die For," has a touching ending involving the redemption of one character. I cried at that ending on the two necessary re-reads. A re-read of the other book brought, instead, laughter, since that was appropriate for its finale. Did I not remember how those books ended? What do you think?

The second re-release, "A Valley to Die For," will be out in May. The final book sample just came. I picked it up after it slid out of its packing, approved the change in cover art, and--I couldn't help myself--opened to the first page and began to read! I just had to see, once more, how Carrie and Henry were handling their first adventure together, and how JoAnne's murder impacted both their lives.


Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

I am thrilled to hear that these books are being revived. Best of luck, Radine, and thanks for the mention.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

So far I've only published three books, but on a couple of occasions I decided to re-read two of them, and, like you, I was pleased to find I was totally engrossed in them. It's very reassuring, when you think of it. By then, you are reading your work like a reader, not like the author, and it was a bit heartening to see they are really good reads. Lol.

Radine Trees Nehring said...

Thanks, girls! Elizabeth, I hadn't thought of my re-reads in just that way--I am approaching the books as a reader, not an author. Yes!

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