Misery Loves Company?

Posted on 06/27/2011


I read.

A lot.

There are tons of books out there that I love in multiple genres.  I like a good book, regardless of what genre it is. How’s that?

However, one trend I’ve noticed throughout the years is miserable back stories on characters. Especially in the literary and horror and even YA (hell, all genres).

Why do readers like reading about miserable characters? I am currently reading The Passage by Justin Cronin, and every character in the story is miserable and has the most depressing back story you can imagine. And it was a hot seller! Seems like every Greg Iles book has miserable characters.  So many!

So my question is, why do so many bestsellers have miserable characters? Why do we like to read about people like this?

I find it hard to write characters with sucky pasts, but apparently it sells!


Posted in: Writing