Here it is. All those things that make you fall in love with books? Forget about ’em. How about what makes you walk away. Throw the book? Hide it in your closet to never be touched or read again? Here are some of my book turnoffs that have made me do just that.
Badly done covers
There are some covers out there that just never serve a book well. And if you want to say first impressions don’t matter go ahead, but I disagree.
For me it’s everything, if a book cover catches my eye, then maybe I’ll actually pick it up and read the back, read the first chapter even. Certain covers are too plain, too much, too girly, too everything. When it’s not planned out well enough it tells me that maybe the publishing company wasn’t that good. From there, what about the editing? Am I going to be mind-editing this book the entire time because it wasn’t done well? I hope not ’cause I’ve done it far too many times with fanfiction.
Badly done synopsis
Again, we’re at first impressions. Dazzle me, entrance me, capture me. Make it so my curiosity is caught in a hold so fierce that book will be on my mind until I have to read it. Anything less is depressing. I can usually tell if I’m going to like a book just from that quick scan. If it’s not well done, then I’ll probably turn away for something more impressive.
Weak main character
They can’t all be perfect I know, because that’s just as annoying. But do I want to read about some snivelling little retch that needs to be saved or consoled every other chapter? No not really. I don’t deal with those people in real life for a reason it seems. There’s a certain level I guess in me where I believe people need to take care of themselves, help is important yes. But stand on your own two feet. That’s where I can let go of a weak-minded character; if they’re growing as a person throughout the book.
No. Just no. For any who don’t know:
“A Mary Sue is an idealized and seemingly perfect fictional character, a young or low-rank person who saves the day through unrealistic abilities. Often this character is recognized as an author insert or wish-fulfillment.” – Wikipedia
I’ve read a lot of books, watched a lot of anime. Read a lot of fanfiction, hated a lot of Sues.
Nobodies perfect. But I don’t want to be correcting grammar and run on sentences as I read. Most editors are hardasses I’m sure, but it still happens. I’m not saying I’m perfect with grammar and all that either, far from it. Just when I read, it ruins the enjoyment, pulls me out of the world with a snap. Far too easily and every time.
This one had to be put together just for the sake of me not losing it. This entire post is far more upsetting than I expected. Last time I’ll do a post of things that upset me, I’m telling you guys.
Anyways, writing where they’re unfocused, not centred or just badly put together. Turn off. Big one.
Same goes for the characters. Five year olds are immature. Sixteen year olds (talking majority of YA here) are their genre, Young Adult and they can act that way. Not like a whining five year old. The five year olds are cuter. Usually…
Okay, if it’s the type of story, a family deal, explaining how to deal with it, I have no problem. Epilogues, endings, by all means the kids are cute and wonderful.
But in the middle of my action story do not impregnate the main character to add more drama because do I have news for you. Once that kid is in, the actions over, no more adventures that are dangerous because your life is meant to protect that child now, not your own wants or needs, but a child that needs your help. End of story.
Abuse without reason
Abuse of any kind is horrible so if you’re going to write about it, do not make light of it. The second you add in abuse just to make some kind of empathy ploy or drama and not to focus on that character, their wellbeing and the recovery, I feel like it’s crossing a line.
Not all books have to have some special meaning behind it. I just feel like the best ones do. From the main character learning how to be their own person or how to stand up for your opinions, the best of books are going to teach me something. Maybe the author intends the lessons maybe they didn’t. But the best of books will have it.
And admittedly wasting time on something that teaches me nothing? Not much of a turn on.
Hey now there’s a rhythm to how this descended. I went from the first impression down to the gritty details. That was pretty good because I swear that wasn’t on purpose.
What turns you off from a book?
Contrary, what’s the best turn on?
Agree or disagree with my turnoffs?
Until next time,