Booking Through Thursday – Pet Peeves?
This week is just dragging and dragging. We got a pasta lunch at work yesterday but then had to sit through an hour and 25 minutes long “update meeting” about software and sales figures and other crap I’m sure means something to them but is just a bunch of abbreviations and numbers to the rest of us. But I lived and here we come to Thursday. I’m tired and my neck hurts and I can’t wait for this week to be over. But, being Thursday that means it is time for Booking Through Thursday. (Because what is life without book memes?)
Our question for this week is: What are your literary “pet peeves”?
We all have our pet peeves and things that turn us off on a book. I think it would just be easiest to list them.
1. Letter format! Books told completely in letters between characters. I find it irritating because it is so limiting and you always feel like only half the story is there and you’re just being jerked along, like a badly edited film.
2. Too many points of view. I like books to be in third person, but books written in first or second person should only have (at most!) two points of view. There may be more than one side to a story but having too many just makes it confusing or cluttered.
3. Female characters that are too stupid to live. Yes, I know that characters don’t always know everything a reader does but at least have a little common sense and get your head of our your ass.
4. Instant love. Probably 95% of all YA books I read have this in some measure. It’s the situation where boy and girl meet and fall instantly, madly in love and it’s the type of love that can stop wars and save the world. I rarely see a nicely developed relationship that, well, develops.
5. Perfect People. The word “gorgeous” is used in the first sentence to describe them. This is usually the boy, who appears to be nothing more than a great body and killer smile. (Mysterious past optional.) However, the girl is always very pretty with bright blue eyes and lovely hair. Because nobody get pimples in fiction or might be overweight.
6. Authors that put in references to other books, pieces of art, movies, TV shows, or other media and somehow expect the reader to know what the hell they are talking about. That funny scene or vital piece of information won’t make a lot of sense without some explanation! You think everyone might know something but you’d be wrong.
7. Villains who do not have a real reason for being villains. Evil for the sake of evil is boring.
8. Books that are set in exotic locals and yet fail to make me feel as if I’m really there. If the book is set in Europe or Asia, I want to feel as if I’m half-way across the globe while reading that book. Good writers give a reader a sense of location. Great writers make the reader forget they’re sitting on the sofa in the living room.
9. Secondary characters that are cardboard cut outs. They are scenery. They have no personality and are only there to populate the book. That shrub other there is more interesting.
10. Ridiculous science or magic. Science has rules. Magic has rules. Both need a basis in fact to be believable. You might make those facts up, but “because I said so” does not count.
Posted on April 19, 2012, in book meme, Booking Through Thursday and tagged book meme, fiction, meme, meme for book bloggers, pet peeves, random questions, what not to do when writing a book. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.