January 24, 2020, 01:45:43 PM

Author Topic: Annoying Reading  (Read 6401 times)

Offline m3mnoch

Re: Annoying Reading
« Reply #30 on: July 05, 2015, 05:08:18 PM »
you guys have hit on a few of mine -- head-hopping, silly motivations, etc. -- but the one that makes me insane is getting pounded by a relentless cavalcade of adjectives.

for example:
"He licked dry lips with a dry tongue and adjusted his purple cape about his bony shoulders."

that's one of the first sentences in legend.  i almost put the book down right there.  the only reason i ended up reading (and enjoying) the book was because of the ridiculous amount of praise and recommendations and awards for gemmell.

Offline SugoiMe

Re: Annoying Reading
« Reply #31 on: July 09, 2015, 01:36:04 PM »
It might have been mentioned, but I'm never keen on reading pages of description about the setting.  I don't really care about what kind of foliage there is, whether the trees are spruce, fir, douglas, whatever.  You tell me trees and I'll think of whatever comes to mind.  A bit is fine, but not three pages.  I'm looking at you, Terry Brooks.  Couldn't get through the Windsong of Shannara (think that's what it's called) because of all the description.  I like books that give enough description to immerse you in the story, but only enough so the rest is left to the imagination.

Fancy, educated language way beyond my expertise.  Thanks to learning Japanese, I've dumbed down quite a bit, and I feel quite stupid when I can't understand a string of words.  Maybe I just need to read more, though. lol
"And then the time came when the risk it took to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom." - Anais Nin

Offline Rostum

Re: Annoying Reading
« Reply #32 on: July 09, 2015, 04:37:08 PM »
I think one of the advantages of writing is readers use their imagination to fill in the blanks. There are writers here who do not like to paint themselves into a corner with intricate description of things not important as well.

Offline Roxxsmom

Re: Annoying Reading
« Reply #33 on: July 10, 2015, 05:13:27 AM »
Getting things really wrong with horses and their abilities, or with animals in general. All those wolves that attack groups of travelers, for instance. It's very unusual for these animals to attack humans, even when they're alone and unarmed.

And those little things about the middle ages that everyone knows but aren't really true. Not that fantasy novels have to be (or even should be) set in the European middle ages, but many writers like to do it, and they often cite realism for things that are not realistic...

It's true, though, that we tend to be harder on mistakes in our own areas of expertise. At the other end of the extreme are writers who are experts in something, and part of their motivations for writing their novel seems to be dispelling myths and misconceptions. I've run across people in crit groups, for instance, who have actual marital arts, combat, or sword fighting experience, and they often default to writing combat scenes that are detailed and realistic at the expense of moving the scene or story along in a way that's interesting.

Offline RemadeGold

Re: Annoying Reading
« Reply #34 on: July 17, 2015, 01:40:56 AM »
That is a pretty good discussion on swords. Out of my league, though.  Anyway, I turn the grammar and spelling editor off when reading for myself, so unless it's REALLY bad I'm not going to notice.  That said, the shortlist of peeves:

1) Too much talking during a fight.  You're trying to kill each other, not bake a cake.
2) Female characters -I admit I'm a bit rough on female characters. Most are either useless or men with bras.  As someone else alluded to (Misty, I think?), there's more to being tough than being able to bench press 5 tons.  (This works the other way, too: there's more to being "sensitive" or whatever than emotionally vomiting left and right.)
3) The male lead being wimpy to make the female lead look better.
4) *Never* telling me what a character looks like. (First person is the exception; it can be too awkward to have the narrator describe him/herself.)  Ex: There's one book I read where two thirds of the way through the book you learn this major character's skin color. The color didn't matter, but if you haven't given me a basic idea of what a character looks like in the first few paragraphs of introduction, whatever image I conjure is what they look like, forever.

Things other people mentioned already:
--Characters doing things that don't make sense or are out of character. (It doesn't have to be *rational,* but people follow *some* sort of thought process, and I should know at least the gist of it.)

Miscellaneous aside: I don't mind omniscient. The Iliad is omniscient. But a good omniscient POV is never confusing, and that's where I think many people mess up.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2015, 01:46:03 AM by remadegold »
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