What I’m Tired of Reading…

It’s no secret I love to read!  I’ve been doing a lot of reading over the past few months and I’ve come to the conclusion that there are many things authors seem to enjoy using in their books that, quite frankly, I’m sick of reading.  Here is my list…authors take note (if you want, haha):

  • Zombies:  Yes, I know the zombie apocalypse thing is all the rage right now but I have yet to read a book featuring zombies where it actually sounds cool.  Mostly it’s just annoying versions of “Run for your life from the undead who want to eat us!!!”  Yawn.
  • The Love Triangle:  Enough already, love triangles are uncool and annoying.  I like a book with some romance in it…but please spare me the “which guy should I choose?” story line (and seriously, it’s always the girl who is forced to choose, why not make the guy choose?  That would at least be different).
  • The Weak Female Protagonist:  I don’t expect perfection, a female protagonist can still be strong while needing help from other characters, but I can’t stand it if they simply can’t function without some hot guy nearby who saves her/loves her/helps her…etc.  Speaking of hot guys…
  • The Hot Characters:  Why must all interesting characters (whether protagonist or antagonist) be hot?  Please do not insult my intelligence as a reader by using this very tired ploy to get me to like certain characters by describing them this way.  Just tell me what they look like and I can decide for myself if I think they are hot or not, thank you.  It’s fine, by the way, if one character thinks another character is hot, don’t force the reader to agree.  It also annoys me when the plain girl/boy wins over the hot and popular boy/girl.  It seems too shallow to be so focused on looks, I’d rather read about romance based on things that matter.
  • Fake Swear Words:  Is this some kind of new trend?  If so, please make it stop.  I understand maybe needing some strong language in order to get the point across, but there are creative ways around this if you’d rather not drop an f-bomb every sentence besides inventing a new swear word language.
  • Look How Edgy I Am, I Can Swear A Lot:  This is not a new pet-peeve of mine, but I really don’t like it when an author uses a ton of swear words in an attempt to look cool and/or edgy.  You can write a “mature” story without overdoing it in the swearing department.  You can be edgy without showing me that know a large variety of swear words.  I’m not a total prude, I don’t mind some swearing, but I’m more impressed by authors who show me a wide use of vocabulary without sinking into the creative swearing department.
  • Vampires:  Not all vampire books are bad, but if you can’t write something unique (ie. not Twilight–which wasn’t that great– knock-offs) then just don’t go there.  I’m tired of reading vampire books where I’m supposed to think the vampires are stupendously amazing, hot, and brilliant…while they are killing everyone.  Yeah, that’s not so attractive.  What would be cool is a book about a vampire that falls in love with a girl who turns around and stakes him in the heart.  That would be awesome!  So I’m not against all vampire books, just the old, worn out vampire plots.  Vampires as side characters aren’t so bad.
  • The Side-Story Romance That Ends Up Taking Over the Actual Plot:  If the story is an actual romance, then yes, I’d expect that part of the story to be the main focus.  But in most stories, romance is a side-plot, not the main plot.  Keep it there, on the side, don’t let it take over everything else.
  • This Plot Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere:  I recently finished a series where the author got bogged down with so many details and characters that the actual plot ended up stalling, in the end I stopped caring, nor did I completely understand what exactly happened in the end, it was all just way too much.  It’s nice if you know a lot of background about your story, but you don’t necessarily need to share every last detail of it with the reader.  Also, if you are using the stall technique as a way to write and sell more books, you can stop that too because we readers aren’t that stupid.  When I see that happening I’m a lot less likely to buy the books in question, but borrow them…that is, if I continue reading such a series at all.  I also don’t recommend them to my friends.
  • Long, Pointless Books:  This kind of goes with my above point, but longer books aren’t necessarily better, sometimes they are just long.  Too long.  Get to the point, keep the plot going, don’t bore me to death.  Reading should be fun, not a chore.  I’m a reader, not an author’s slave.

Time to stop before I get carried away, but you get my drift.  What trends in books bother you (if any)?

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6 responses to “What I’m Tired of Reading…

  1. Lol…seems like you’ve been reading the wrong kind of books then. I think those things you don’t like can be easily avoided, if you choose your books carefully, based on what you do like.

    But yeah, I understand your pet peeves…especially the zombies and vampires and the long pointless books. That’s also why I stay away from books with those “themes.”

    • Well, two things come to mind right off the bat: 1)Most of the time I have no idea a book will contain a pet peeve of mine until I actually read it and 2)Just because a book has one or more of these things doesn’t automatically mean I think the book is bad. Vampire books are easy to avoid, and I do, I just get frustrated by the sheer number of book out there these days that seem to feature vampires. The zombie thing I usually come across by accident because the books I’ve read lately with zombies aren’t marketed as zombie books. Same with the romance thing, which is misleading. In the end I like so many types of books that it’s really impossible to “choose books carefully based on what I like.” I like a lot of genres, themes, and types. I read for experience, not to limit myself, which means I accept the fact that from time to time I’m going to come across trends I don’t like. 😉

      • You’re absolutely right. Sometimes you just can’t avoid it, I guess. Especially those less obvious ones like love triangles, weak heroines and hot stereotypical characters….sometimes they just kinda ambush you, and by then, maybe you’re too far into the book that it’d be a waste not to read it.

        I’ve experienced that before too and get frustrated after that I kept reading that particular book when I could have spent my time reading a better book. lol.

        But yeah, I guess it’s part of the reading experience to read books you don’t like…in order to know what kind of books you do like and what kind of books you would consider “good.”

        Maybe as a follow up post, you can write about themes you actually like in books and want to see more of…? That would be quite interesting. Though, now that I think about it, it might be something even I can’t write about lol.

      • That’s not a bad idea, I like that idea for another post. I’ll have to give it some thought thought… 😛

  2. I agree with all of these. Another I don’t like is that all teenage girls seem to be really angsty in YA books. There are teenage girls out there who can cope with things without being all “woe is me”. I guess that is similar to your weak protagonist.

    Something else I don’t see enough of is an established couple to start the story off. Have a comfortable, loving relationship be the side-plot of the story for once. (Why I’m writing the one I’m working on). Another is in a lot of the fantasy I read the elves are always ethereal beautiful beings which everyone falls in love with. Why can’t they be stuck up snobs like most beautiful, popular types?.Another story idea I had, because of this, was that I want to write a story where the protagonist falls for the dwarf because he’s cool, not beautiful.

    However, the good thing about your list like this, is you can see where the holes in the market are and maybe write something that you’d really enjoy seeing out there. 🙂

    • I suppose YA books in general have angst because authors figure teenagers can relate, but I agree with you. Even when I was a teenager, when I read too much angst in books I wondered why they didn’t stop complaining and do something about it. I like your ideas for things you’d like to see more of. The dwarf idea is especially good, I’m liking that! This does give me ideas of what I might like to write, but I also know that what I like is only my opinion. 😉

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