On Monday, Alicia commented:
I don't generally end up finishing the really bad [books]. I can learn from the good ones as well...and I have precious little time enough to read to be wasting my time reading bad books! :DAnd it's true for me too. If a book is really terrible, I won't bother to finish it. But the ones I have finished have taught me another really important lesson.
I downloaded a free novel that had an interesting description. I was enjoying the story. The plot was fairly predictable, but there are many times when I just want something comforting and predictable to read. But a little over halfway through, I noticed something strange.
While before there had been a couple minor typos, towards the end, more typos cropped up. And then there was a glaring grammar error. Then a sentence that didn't quite make sense.
(And then I was whacked upside the head with a ludicrous plot development, but that's beside the point.)
The first two-thirds of the book were pretty well done. The last third looked as if the editor got bored or tired and kind of gave up.
Since then, I've noticed a few books with this same problem. It starts off good. But once I'm into the story and nearing the end, the editing problems start to crop up.
I know it's important to make sure the first chapter is spotless. Beginnings are vital to hooking a reader and keeping him/her reading. But endings are important, too. And the later chapters of a book need just as much care and attention as the earlier ones.
How careful are you with the later chapters of your books?