How Does Reading Level Matter in Fiction?

This is cool.

Kristen Twardowski

How well do most published authors write? Would you be surprised to hear that Jane Austen wrote at just above a 5th grade level, Stephen King writes at about a 6th grade level, J.R.R. Tolkien wrote at slightly more than a 6th grade level, and Leo Tolstoy wrote at about an 8th grade level?

To find out all of this information, Shane Snow did a readability analysis of the works of different bestselling authors. He based his exploration off of their scores for the Flesch-Kincaid tests, which were developed in 1975 on behalf of the US Navy to assess the difficulty of technical manuals. These tests take into account total words, sentences, and syllables in order to assess a written work’s grade level.

Snow’s analysis found that higher level writing did not necessarily result in successful sales. In fact, the bestselling fiction books that he looked at all fell…

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Between Books – When the Blog Comes in Handy

This isn't my PC but this is how it looks. I have sticky notes everywhere! Uhh.
Google Images Pic.

Only a writer would be folding clothes at twelve o’clock at night and contemplating whether they should make a batch of coffee to spend just a few more hours writing, all of this while the History Channel recaps an episode of Pearl Harbor as background noise. It was then that this post was conceived. In fact, I still have a pair of pants under my arm as I am drafting this. What can I say, gotta write when the spirit moves.

As I took a break from my work to finish laundry that could have waited until morning for normal people, I thought about how much this blog has helped to fill in the gaps during my “Between books” stage (thanks for your support BTW!). I like to think I write at a decent speed (six months to complete the first draft) but after that things tend to slow way down as the revision and editing process kicks in. I thus find myself in the waiting room watching as an author after author fangirls over their new release while I’m in chill mode, waiting for my name to be called. It will be awhile before my book is ready. This is when blogging (among other things) helps a great deal.

It helps because while I am in limbo I can keep up with learning new things, reading new books, and keeping myself in tuned with my readers and supporters until the next book is due. It almost feels like teaching but being off for the summer. Some teachers volunteer to teach summer school for some extra funds while others take advantage of the free time. Blogging for me is like a writing summer school, a way to stay active between books. This also helps me to brainstorm on other ways to expand my business beyond the book itself and into other areas of product.

I do admit it’s a challenge to produce blog posts, engage with other bloggers, share content, engage in social media and keep my ear to the Indie Publishing ground all while writing a novel and there are days where I must turn the phone off. It’s either that or pull my hair out. However, I see it all as part of the work and it’s also a lot of fun to me. I’m a worker bee which means that I HAVE to be doing something and while the blog is still a small part of my life in the full scope of things, it does help to keep me active in more ways than one. I guess that’s sort of the point of this post.

It’s important to continue to produce material and sometimes that will take time. The Blog (and the email list) is the answer to how to stay engaged while you wait. Or at least it is for me. The ability to schedule blog posts is a huge time saver and I could sit my butt in the chair and finish what I’d been putting off. Patience truly is a virtue and I am quite pleased with the revelations I’ve been given so far. I can only hope for increased growth. #HWPO is something I try to keep at the back of my mind. That is, hard work pays off. Let’s hope so.

Now, I should probably go ahead and publish this post and get back to these clothes. It is after 1am my time after all. I’m pretty sure I’m somewhere in dreamland when you’re reading this…or not (shout out to my night-owls with the tiny light under the covers scrolling through blog posts).

 

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Yecheilyah Ysrayl is the YA, Historical Fiction author of The Stella Trilogy, Blogger, and Poet. She is currently working on her next book series “The Nora White Story” about a young black woman who dreams of being a writer in The Harlem Renaissance movement and her parent’s struggle to accept their traumatic past in the Jim Crow south. “Renaissance: The Nora White Story (Book One)” is due for release spring, 2017. For updates on this project, sneak peeks of chapters, the pending book cover release, and full blurb for this series, be sure to subscribe to Yecheilyah’s email list HERE.

Convicted

think-backward-to-write-meaningful-metaphors

His beauty was biblical. Much more than a body, he was diary. He was journal. A standing column of poetry. From the top of his head to the bottom of his feet, this was prophecy. Thought the teacher was a waitress asked her if I could have another round of him. Let’s be realistic, this thing was futuristic like foresight. Every time he opened his mouth I took road trips into his memories. For my blood racing, I could not hide the joy. Trying to catch my breath after falling into his smile we were connected. Too young to understand this love-at-first-sight thing, I could have been dreaming. Maybe this was just my imagination. I was dancing. Moon-walking into complete relaxation. His last name should have been Jackson cause he was a hit. I couldn’t lie. Ran home every day just to go to bed so I can wake up to the sunrise because it reminded me of him. He didn’t know it but my nose was so open I took notes. I was singing. A sucka to every sound of the harmonious humility that escaped like convicts from his lips I was convicted, because I loved him too early.


Yecheilyah Ysrayl is the YA, Historical Fiction author of The Stella Trilogy, Blogger, and Poet. She is currently working on her next book series “The Nora White Story” about a young black woman who dreams of being a writer in The Harlem Renaissance movement and her parent’s struggle to accept their traumatic past in the Jim Crow south. “Renaissance: The Nora White Story (Book One)” is due for release spring, 2017. For updates on this project, sneak peeks of chapters, the pending book cover release, and full blurb for this series, be sure to subscribe to Yecheilyah’s email list HERE.