Tag Archive | novice writers

Book pet hates

Recently, I began thinking about the things that annoy me when reading a book. Sometimes you can be reading a really good book, but the author might keep doing just one little thing that keeps niggling at you. Maybe it’s a phrase. Maybe it’s the way they write their sentences. Or maybe it is the constant typo that keeps cropping up.

We all have them. Pet hates. Those things that really frustrate us when reading and sometimes even force us to close the book and stop reading altogether.

For me, it is things like short jerky sentences, really long chapters and sloppy dialogue. And then when you think about the actual content of the story, I cant stand anything too obvious, or things that drag out much longer than they need to.

I took myself off to Facebook and Twitter and asked that very question to my friends. What are your pet hates when reading. I received quite a mix of answers and  thought to myself, people should really know this. As a writer, it is really handy to know what readers like and dislike when reading. So I thought I would list a few of the responses I got:

 

  • Historical Inaccuracies
  • A character playing with their hair too much
  • Character POV too long
  • Character POV not long enough
  • A popular one – Headhopping
  • Extra, unnecessary words
  • Excessive backstory
  • Adverbs
  • Information dumping
  • Typos
  • Fancy words that you have to look up the meanings for
  • Repetition of words
  • Heroes who are hot, sexy and pretty much perfect!
  • Short jerky sentences
  • Obvious clichés
  • Alpha males who are bullies
  • Certain phrases (These were individual to the person commenting)

 

So as you can see, there are lots of things that you can do when writing a book which will really bug the reader. Isn’t writing a book supposed to be easy – oh wait, that’s right, it’s not 🙂

When I read all these comments – which are from both authors and readers – I was surprised at some, which is why I thought it would be a good idea to share it with you all.

I hope you’ve found this post useful. Maybe you have some pet hates yourself which haven’t been mentioned. Please feel free to add them into the comments below.

A special thanks to the following people for getting involved and voicing their views on my Fb and Twitter:

Jean Fullerton, Judy Astley, Julie Mccullogh, Sophia Valentine, Jo Cannon, Rhoda Baxter, Sue Moorcroft, Liz Ringrose, Linda Mitchelmore, Berni Stevens, Samantha Tonge, Georgia Hill, Jane Lovering, ReaBookReview, Kate Johnson, Nina Pottell and Julie Cohen.

 

Thanks for stopping by.

Lucie x

 

It’s oh, so quiet … shhh …

Good afternoon,

It has been very quiet on my blog of late. But I am still here. I had a rest period over the festive holidays to enjoy time with my family and friends and re-focus myself. I set myself goals for the coming year – some are writing related, some are just general life – and set about in January to fulfil them. Or at least begin to.

One of my goals was to write more. This is why it has been quiet – I have been writing! I am well underway with my second novel now and I am loving the direction it has taken me. I spent ages planning it which is something I had not done in quite so much detail before. But, I had hoped it would help keep me focused – especially on those days where it is a struggle to get more than two words out, let alone hundreds and thousands as expected.

This is what my board looks like:

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Planning for next book

And I am now 20k into the first draft and am  I using the board? Well, sort of. I regularly refer back to it to see where I should be going. But, I have found that now I am writing the story of these characters, they’ve got their own mind about where they want to go. So I’ve been using it as more of a guide, rather than set in stone.

I have also been doing my usual Romaniac duties, along with being a mummy, wife and trying to read when I can. So it is all a bit full on. But I will try and pop in and blog from time to time to keep you all updated on things,

I have a good feeling about 2014. I am going to work my socks off – just you see. Thanks so much for your on-going support. It really is appreciated.

Love Lucie x

I’m back and I’m here to stay!

Well, what a year this year has been so far. As I’m sure many other novice writers out there will agree, sometimes life seems to take over and before you know it, it has been a few months and the total number of words on your WiP has amounted to a measly, 5! (I am actually being optimistic when I say that because mine probably amounts to even less!)

This is exactly what has happened to me this last year. My home/work life took over every spare minute I used to have writing, and completely swallowed it all up. All of it. Nothing left. Well no actually, that’s a small fib. The time I did have left to write, I spent telling myself I was rubbish so why bother. I had a massive confidence crisis and slowly but surely, all my self belief drained out of my body.

As many of my friends know, I am a very strong believer in Fate, and things happening for a reason. Really, it does! Even the really really rubbish things – there’s a reason for those too. Even though at the time they may not necessarily be clear to us.

And after a few stressful months battling along the rough sea, I feel I have hit the calm. It’s very tranquil here and I have decided to pitch up and stay. Throughout the recent years that my writing has become a main factor in my life, everytime I slide away from it – be it because of family life or work – I always end up right back here. In the comfort of my little writing bubble. And I’m starting to think maybe this is it. This is where I am destined to be. Yes, I have enjoyed all the other roads I have strolled down and all the other professions I have trained in, but never am I more content than when I am in my writing bubble.

This last year I have thrown everything into trying to create a new career for myself. I set myself up to apply to University, train up, and begin my journey on a new road. But the whole time I felt like I was running against the tide. Everything that could go wrong, was going wrong. It was almost like Fate was screaming at me that it wasn’t the right road to take, but there was me, skipping along, trying to be determined and keep wading through all the toot it brought with it. But one too many things went pear shaped and it hit me – this isn’t my path.

I’m sure Fate did a victory dance when I cancelled my application. ‘Hallelujah! The woman’s finally listened, stubborn cow!’

So here I am, back at my trusty keyboard and I feel great. My self belief isn’t quite up to par yet and my confidence is still dragging its feet behind me, but I’m here and I’m writing. And I’m here to stay. I love my book, I think it has huge potential and I just need to believe in it and get it done. I have an incredible amount of support from so many people, both in the writing industry and out, and I am so very grateful for each and every one of you who take the time to encourage me and show your support.

Thank you x