As an accountant (my day job) I live and die by formulas. It’s how I know that I will arrive at a conclusive answer. Everything has order which I love. This thought process is how I approach books.

When I first began to write a story, I just wrote. And wrote. And wrote. When I let an agent read those first few pages, oh my. That dear story is safely tucked away never to see the light of day. So I delved into the art of learning how to write. And to this accountant’s delight, I learned that writing has formulas! Yay!!

The perfect story formula goes something like this:

Exciting opening + heroic characters + witty dialogue + descriptive scenes + angst + swoony moments + a happy ending = the best romance ever.

Easy, right?

Well, what if you read a book that didn’t follow the formula of a perfect book?

This was me a few weeks ago.

I picked up a book by a popular British author who I’d never read before. It snagged my attention because of the premise. I was excited to begin reading and eagerly dug into chapter one. After I finished chapter one I stopped turning pages.

Because nothing exciting had happened in chapter one. I was asking myself, “Why is the author telling us all of this information? This does not make me want to keep reading!”

But I persisted because of her popularity and I wanted to see more of the premise unveiled.

And I discovered as I swung pages to the left (not literally because it was on my Kindle) that I was hooked. The author was brilliantly introducing me to her characters who took the story and ran. So, of course, I followed them through the pages. And when I was finished I had a happy sigh because the author delivered a “happy sigh”-worthy story that I would have missed had I stopped reading.

What’s the last book you read that didn’t follow your expectations but you enjoyed?


By day, Kelly D. Scott is buried in Excel spreadsheets, which is why she must write.

She graduated from Texas A&M University with a BBA in Accounting and, almost ten years later, she completed her MS in Accounting at UT Dallas. She wrote her first manuscript in 2017 when a photo in People magazine sparked an idea. 130,000 words later, that book is parked safely under her bed.

Kelly resides in the Dallas area with her illustrator husband (whom she met on Eharmony) and her two boys. She has lived in Texas all of her life, except for two and a half years when she was a missionary in China and Thailand. Oh, and she did spend a summer as a missionary in Australia where she learned how to do the Tim Tam slam. When Kelly isn’t writing or lost in Excel, she enjoys reading, cooking, baking, watching football, and spending time with her family. She is a member of ACFW.