Top Ten Tuesday: Book Turn-offs
A weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish!
This week's topic is about the things we encounter while we are reading and it totally turns you off.
- Trying overly-hard to be bizarre/edgy/unique: As a sci-fi and fantasy lover I enjoy books that are interesting and weird. But when an author hits you over the head with it like "Look at me! I'm strange and different!!!" it gets old.
- Monsters that aren't monsters: If you are going to have vampires, werewolves, or monsters in your book do it right. If you are going to copy the traditions set down by Bram Stoker and other great authors at least follow their guidelines. Monsters are not the heroes of a story. They can have redemption, but generally the monster is there to cause problems (like Dracula or Dr. Frankenstein's monster). It's interesting to explore the lines of hero vs. monster, but do it in an intelligent and realistic way.
- Not using punctuation or writing in verse: There is a trend of experimental novels in which the authors choose not to use punctuation or don't write in prose. It's cool to experiment, but I find it too distracting, so it is not my cup of tea. I can, however, deal with lack of quotation marks if it is done right. Of course there is also the exception of epic poems.
- Ripping off other authors then pretending you are creative: It is ok to imitate your heroes and even borrow from them. But do it right! Give them credit, don't just act like you are a super creative genius who thought all of this up! Or, at least change it enough to where it is actually unique. But don't pretend that there are no connections at all. I realize that there are no new stories and that we are all influenced by other works, but don't be blatant about it.
- Shallowness: Books don't have to be super philosophical and complex, but there needs to be some depth. Have round characters or challenging situations. Don't make it all about a shallow character going about their life and not changing.
- Mocking religion: I hate it in books when there are religious characters that are portrayed as ignorant, stupid, and overbearing. It's cliche and disrespectful. There are people that act like that, but a religion does not define every member. Also, when the religious character turns out to be a complete asshole hypocrite. It's ok to have religious characters that struggle and fall, but trying to be clever through showing the hypocrisy of religion through a flat character is immature.
I think I will cut it off here. Sorry this week turned into a series of rants. I've tried to avoid specific examples of books I dislike so as not to offend people.