Follow Friday and 'Stardust'

Alison Can Read Feature & Follow
It's Friday and it is the day that my exams officially end! Oh freedom, sweet freedom! All I am going to do for the next weeks is laze about, read, eat, blog, drink, sleep and sleep some more. But before then, it is time to get this post full of memes up! Follow Friday is hosted by Alison Can Read and Parajunkee and they have chosen a terribly difficult question for today's post:

How important is good writing to you? In an ideal world, a book would be beautifully written AND have great character development, plot, etc. But in the real world, which do you prefer: (1) Great characters and plot with lousy writing or (2) Middling character development and plot but gorgeous writing?

This is such a difficult question! I WANT BOTH! (perfect excuse to use this gif). In all seriousness, I feel like you can't have one without the other. This might sound rude but I feel that an author who puts a lot of thought into his characters and his plot also writes beautifully because he cares. On the other hand, an author who doesn't seem to be that interested in developing and delving into their own story usually won't write that well as well.
I do have to add a caveat here, there are some amazing authors out there who self-publish and therefore don't go through the professional editing stage. This is why I can, occasionally, forgive spelling mistakes as long as they are an exception. However, spelling mistakes are different from lousy writing. Some people just don't seem to be able to write nicely, but to be honest, most of those people never really make it to the end of novel-writing.

Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Billy over at Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer
When you view someone's profile, what information do you like to see?

If by "profile" you mean someone's Google profile, then I have to be honest and say I hardly ever look at them. I tend to sometimes look at the About Me section, but I spend more attention looking at the blog itself. I know from experience that it is terribly hard to write about yourself in those kind of profiles because I always end up having very deep thoughts about who I really am.

Book Beginnings and Friday 56 are hosted by Rose City Reader and Freda's Voice respectively.  This week I'm using Neil Gaiman's Stardust. I absolutely love the Claire Danes movie, it makes me laugh, it at times makes me cry. So I'm really excited about this book.
'There was once a young man who wished to gain his Heart’s Desire.And while that is, as beginnings go, not entirely novel (for every tale about every young man there ever was or will be could start in a similar manner) there was much about this young man and what happened to him that was unusual, although even he never knew the whole of it.'p.1
I like this beginning. Gaiman is really playing up the whole fairytale aspect while also luring the reader in by promising that there is a lot more there as well!

'Billy lowered his head and ran, headlong, at the unicorn, as if he were about to butt it with his forehead. The unicorn lowered its head also, and Billy the Innkeeper met his unfortunate end.' p.56
I hope this doesn't really count as a spoiler, but I personally know Billy isn't a big character. I do know he's absolutely hilarious in the film though! I love the idea of this unicorn that just pops up randomly. There should definitely be more unicorns in novels.

So, how about you? What do you think is the most important: style or character development? And do you look at people's profiles?


  1. I saw the movie, but haven't yet read this author. Now I'm curious....thanks for sharing, and for visiting my blog.

  2. Enjoyed your excerpts, Juli. Thanks for reminding me that I haven't read enough Neil Gaiman.

    My post:

  3. I haven't read much Neil Gaiman but the 56 made me laugh. What a way to go! I agree about the About Me section over the profiles. That's what I tend to go too as well.

  4. Yes, I loved the movie too, but haven't read the book yet. I must do this…
    My Friday 56

  5. Yes...I meant in the About Me section.

    I like to see a link to their blog, a first name, and an e-mail. I don't like to have to "hunt" for their blog or find out what their first name is. I do like to call folks by their names and not their blog's name. :)

    Happy Hopping!!

    Silver's Reviews
    My Blog Hop Answer

  6. Wonderful Beginning and great 56!!

    Here is my Book Beginning post!!


    Here is my Friday 56 post!!

  7. That Friday Follow question is a tough one. If a book has multiple errors (inconsistent characters, homonym problems, grammatical errors, screwy formatting) then I'm distracted by them and have trouble reading it -- no matter how good the story may be! To me, all those things must be addressed so the structure is seamless and the reader can focus on the story and characters. Does that make sense?
    I enjoyed the opening and 56 from Stardust. I didn't expect a unicorn. What fun!
    My Friday post is here: WALLS FOR THE WIND.

  8. Very nice! I agree as well! I have read quite a few self-pub or indie pub novels and they were awesome! Sure, there might be a few grammar or placement errors (like no space or extra spaces) but that doesn't bother me a whole lot. Just makes me wish I could be their copy editor to begin with! ;)

    Here's my Follow Friday

    Have a GREAT weekend!

    Old Follower :)

  9. Hopping through. I agree that spelling mistakes are different than bad writing. As long as there aren't too many. I actually like catching a few typos - particularly in traditionally published books. I find it amusing.
    My FF

  10. Fun to meet up with a unicorn but sad to hear of Billy's plight. I recently read that head butt's can cause a hole in the retina over time... Oh, dear. I love descriptive writing. It propels me to read the book over and over again.

  11. I'm not sure there could be great characters and plot with lousy writing. The "writing" is what gives us the characters and plot, after all. If they are great, there must be something good about the writing, although there may be stylistic weaknesses. On the other hand, I tend to be annoyed by books that are all style and no substance. If I don't connect to the characters and the story, it's hard for me to keep reading.

  12. I haven't seen the movie or read the book but do love Gaiman's other books. Thanks for visiting.

  13. You had me at unicorn. :-)

    Happy weekend!

  14. I love Star Dust the movie and the book. Both were excellent!

  15. LOL! Poor Billy. Guess it's good his role isn't big. I haven't seen this one. Fun 56.
    Here's mine -

  16. I preferred the graphic novel to the movie. If I can't have great writing, then I want great characters.

  17. I like Neil Gaiman. I'll bet he's amazing to hear in person. I would like to read Stardust. Will make note of it.

  18. I need to reread Stardust! Goodness, Gaiman is such an wonderful storyteller!

  19. Thanks for visiting my blog. I read Stardust after watching the movie and I actually liked the movie better, which never happens. Just something about the way that the actors played the roles was really magical. Have you read Gaiman's The Ocean at the End of the Lane? It is a new favorite.

  20. The first thing I look for is the website link in their blogger profile so I can pop over,

  21. I loved both the book and the movie Stardust, I thought the movie really did it justice and Michelle Pfeiffer was just excellent as well. And Robert De Niro!!
    Old GFC follower, new Bloglovin follower.
    Thanks for stopping by:)
    Peggy @ The Pegster Reads

  22. Neil Gaiman's writing is exquisite! LOVE him. New follower....

    Jen @ Ink on the Shelf


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