If you’re an avid reader then you are already familiar with the term glomming. The term refers to a reader’s need to search for an author’s backlist when they’ve enjoyed their newer works. I just threw “need” in there as some readers feel compelled to find a new author’s past work. I used to do this but no longer.
After glomming a lot of new author’s past works, I noticed something. I noticed that their backlist wasn’t actually a pot of gold waiting to be rediscovered. Harsh statement but it’s the truth. I learned the hard way that just because a new to me author has a book that I just recently loved, loved, loved, that doesn’t mean that their backlist is just as good. There are exceptions, of course.
You see, most authors hit their stride or find their voice after two or three books especially if it’s a series that they are writing. Some authors will have a _great_ first book but the second may not live up to expectations or vice versa. The third book may show some improvement over the second and from then on the writing will continue to fluctuate. If an author I just discovered has a long-standing series associated with the book I just got through reading, chances are little to none that I’ll go find and read the rest.
I’ve developed a hard and fast rule that relates to series or standalone books and that is: just pick up and go. IOW, I just start with the latest book and keep on trucking. If a series is just getting started then chances are slightly better that I’ll go back and read the others. Usually the magic number for me is three in that regard.
Admittedly, glomming a past author’s backlist can be risky business. You may hit a pot of gold or a pile of shit. I’ve had more of the latter to make me stop doing this completely. There are exceptions of course. I often hear readers talk of glomming even today. Guess some of us have had success with it. I’m just a bit curious to know if many of you still glom an author’s backlist and which author’s have a backlist worth a look?
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