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March 02, 2010

Comments

Jersey Jack

"She wakes, terrified, wondering what it all means. It means that your mansucript has just been shit-canned."

My first belly laugh of the day. Thanks.

anonymousie

I read--or tried to read--a book in which the heroine had one of those obvious dreams. She then went around asking various characters about it. Instead of saying "she asked X what he thought of her dream," which would have been bad enough, the author went through describing the dream EVERY TIME. I couldn't believe that book had made it by an editor at a major house. Someone was asleep at the wheel.

Honoria

loved the simile involving Miriam dodging a bullet like a teenager dodging the weekend chores.

Luke W

#3 and #5 are two of my biggest pet peeves, as well.

I might also add "Surprise Family Relationship" to this list. This is the cop-out, that seemingly every author tries at least once, where the killer/bad-guy explains in the climax that they are the protag's father/sister/long-lost-aunt and so the story suddenly gets more 'real'. It's like the author realizes midway through that they haven't done enough by way of character development, so they sprinkle in some Instant-Emotion by revealing the characters are blood relatives. Whoa, a person you weren't aware of until 100 pages ago is related to you! Who cares? She/he/it is still the baddie!

Sure, this is occasionally done to great effect ('Luke, I am your father.') but more often than not it is just a cringe-worthy attempt to manufacture empathy within the reader.

Kate

Well gee, if anonymousie read that in a book, some editor must have thought it was good enough to publish.
Some editor is saying yes to all the dreck out there.

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