07 November 2011

Just For Kicks: Literary Pet Peeves

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#12 – Literary Pet Peeves

I promise to be brief but honest.  Critical but true.  So let us take a moment to branch away from the weak protags, best friend love complexes, vampires, and love at first sight deals.  I will cover my own issues with some books that shall remain nameless.

#1 – Series Titles
If you are writing a book and you are planning on turning it into a series, let me warn you right now.  Do not—DO NOT—name your series after your first book.  Stephenie Meyer got away with this, people, and it does not mean that you will.  I cannot tell you how annoyed I am when the name of the series is the EXACT same as the title of the first book.  This makes no sense and its redundancy is beyond irritating to my already agitated mental state.  So, again.  If you are writing a series, come up with something relevant and for the love of white bread be original.

#2 – "Megan" Shmegan
I don't know why, but I can't stand the name "Megan" as a protag name.  It's weird because my favorite teacher's first name is Megan, but hey, I know her and I love her to death, so I've never thought about her negatively for it.  But if I pick up a book and the main character's name is "Megan"…eek.  Doesn't look good for the outlook of the book getting read.  It's just…one of those names that seeps under my skin and starts a' itchin'.

#3 – Harry Potter Copy Cats
You are not allowed to write about castles and magical schools.  You are not allowed to write about wizards and wands.  You are not allowed to write about half-giants and men with long beards.  It has been done by J.K.Rowling and magnificently!  Do not believe for a second that you will achieve the same worldwide glory as the almighty Ms. Rowling.  You will not.  We do not want you to try.  If I hear so much as a whisper of you writing about a Potions class, or a nemesis with blonde hair, I will hunt you down and let my hippogriff tear you to shreds.  We clear?  Okay, thanks.

#4 – Excruciating Detail
There are only so many ways of saying a person is "tall" or that you were walking down an interesting hallway and decided to take a left turn instead of a right.  Spending two full pages—front and back—to describe the interior of a dungeon would only be impressive if your audience managed to stay awake long enough to read all of it.

#5 – Photocopied Covers
Ever seen those books—usually hardcovers—that don't have proper covers?  You can spot them easily enough by the fact that have a solid black border running around the front cover.  The picture itself looks like a stock photo pulled from the internet and printed for mass production.  These things are awful.  I see them at a frighteningly steady rate while checking in books at my school library.  To think that girls (assumingly girls, anyway) at my school will read that—in fact, pick it off the shelf, look at the summary and the horrible cover and go "yeah, I'm gonna check this out" makes me doubt the fate of humanity as a whole.

#6 – Smells
Ever noticed that girls always describe their love interest by smell?  Think about it.  Not only does he have the likeness of a Greek god but he smells fantastic, too!  Smelling nice is fine.  (Especially if he smells like Old Spice. <3)  But have you ever, ever met someone—a guy someone—who smelled like "summer rain and earth"?  I know I never have, and it's not like I've been living in a convent my whole life.  (I haven't been around the block, though, so calm down.)  I am so tired of guys smelling like a muggy day and dirt.

Don't even get me started about dog eared pages.


what are some of your book-related pet peeves?