Friday, October 26, 2012

Follow Friday #21

Follow Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Alison Can Read and Parajunkee.

Q: What writing device or trick most irritates you when reading a book? For example, if an author employs an omnipotent narrator that is sometimes considered bad form.

Honestly? There are really three things that irk me as a reader (though from a writer's standpoint, I know how easy it is to do these):

One is love triangles. It doesn't matter if this is a dominating facet of the main plot or a minor subplot. They just don't work with me. If you really loved the first dude (because books like these, I notice, are usually told from the point of view of a teenage girl), you wouldn't have fallen for the second. Just a matter of opinion.

The second is when an author introduces a "strong" character who comes across as too weak. You know the type - the bad girl with the black clothes and the mean, tough attitude, who is in love with the nice, shy boy, or happens to be completely reliant on her little sister, or in reality loves little unicorn statuettes. When you make a character strong, you have to make them flawed, as to be realistic - but there is a fine line between flawed and weak. Especially if they present the character as strong in the back-cover summary, a weak character will really irk me.

The third is where the author leaves the outcome of the climax up to pure chance. Let me give you a famous example - Lord of the Rings. Smeagol happens to be there, he happens to be desperate enough in that moment to try and bite the ring off Frodo's finger, and happens to fall in. I would've been more pleased with Sam wrestling Frodo for the Ring, and forces it off his finger and into the lava and Frodo snaps out of his stupid daze of power. Tolkien also did this with The Hobbit - left the dragon to be killed off by some brave human bystander instead of an epic showdown between the dragon and Bilbo with Sting.

Anyways, these three tend to annoy me. If they're bad enough, I'll set the book down, and trust me I don't do that often. Maybe three times in 2012, and since I read 2-3 books a week...

What annoys you when reading? Have a blessed weekend!

1 comment: