Pet Peeves

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I’m sure you’ve all come across a typo, wrong tense, or a few clunky sentences during your reading experience – even with the well-known authors. Some books, especially in the self-published field, contain quite a few. I usually give the non-edited writers a little latitude, usually if the story or characters jump out at me. For authors with more seasoning, I grade them on a higher plane. Unfair? Maybe….

My pet peeve concerns writers who make continuity mistakes in their books. Blondes who become Brunettes after a few chapters. Men with dark brooding looks mysteriously switching to fair-haired pallid individuals. Houses turning into apartments, and so on.  When I start a book I make a chart for all my characters. Name, height, weight, skin/hair color, facial hair, tattoos, glasses, etc, etc. Then I add quirks, habits, personalities (snarky, apathetic, morning person), and any things they would tend to repeat constantly (rolling necks, greetings, goodbyes).

My question to you…..What irritates you the most as you’re reading a book???   

 

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6 thoughts on “Pet Peeves

  1. The continuity thing does bug me the most. I have seen this in big name author’s books. A real pain. I also make up a ‘cast’ sheet which tells me everything about each character. It’s a pain and I keep it up when writing in a separate word processing program so I can view both at the same time. When writing Behind the Raven Mask, a book set in territorial Alaska, I had to make a time line for both Russia and the US to keep dates and happenings together.

    • Time zone problems haven’t been much of a factor in my work with the exception of Romancing the Fox, which dealt with the main characters being separated on the East and West Coasts. Whenever I have to use a timeline, say Monday through Sunday, that’s always a little difficult to manage, especially when a few days are skipped. Excellent point, Cherime.

  2. marcha2014

    I’m an editor at heart and can hardly read without doing so unless the writing is so strong and engaging that I get lost in it. It’s really a nuisance because it keeps me from enjoying what might otherwise be a good story. I laughed at the item above on time zones. Try keeping track of time when you have one character on the ground and another in a spaceship traveling faster than the speed of light. 🙂

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