Thursday, 10 December 2015

15 Errors in Published Novels #Authors #ASMSG #Books

Welcome to Writing Tips


Months ago, random readers shared their dislikes about published novels in general on a Facebook page I stumbled across.

In reading through at the time, it became clear to me that all writers and authors will benefit from these complaints if I blogged about it. 

So I decided to post it here for us (authors & writers) to keep these errors in mind as we churn out books.

So, here you go: the 15 Errors in Published Novels.

1. First Person Books

"Why do authors write in the first person? Writing in the first person is annoying. I prefer reading third person. I hear it is more difficult to write, but it is far more dynamic. I also struggle to enjoy first person novels, especially if they are told from multiple characters."
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"First Person books. Just can't seem to get past the first chapter. I have a Kindle filled with them and need to figure out how to delete them! I find it almost child-like. It's so disturbing to me that I can't get past the first few paragraphs." 
 

"My biggest issue with first person POV is when I read them, I feel like I'm the main character and I don't want to be the main character. The other issue I have is that I like to know what the other people in the book are thinking. You're so character-centered in first person that it makes it hard to get to know the other characters."

2. Grammar

"Grammar!!! It's a huge pet peeve of mine. The incorrect use of the words then and than or your and you're... Yeah kills me every time!
Grammar and punctuation mistakes drive me crazy. Misspelled and misused words pull me out of the story too. Poor research, head hopping, and logic lapses. I can't turn off the internal editor when I read!
 
I don't mind the odd typo - most traditionally published books have them too - but repeated common grammar mistakes would bother me (esp. their/there/they're its/it's)."
 
3. Americanisms in Regency Novels

"I know it's pathetic and pedantic but Americanisms in regency novels. Doorsteps, not stoops and pavements, not sidewalks, dear authors."
4. Formatting/Descriptions

"I don't care for lots of description and flowery language, but they're okay in some genres but some long paragraphs of descriptions-just goes for back story dumps. Poor formatting is a big problem." 
5. Errors in Blurbs

"I've seen cover and blurbs that stop me instantly. GET AN EDITOR, OMG. Missing commas, incorrect form choice...they all drive me nuts."

6. Content - telling

"As a writer who is also a reader, it is all about content for me. If the story and characters are intriguing, then I can easily ignore grammatical mistakes. No one is perfect, and many new authors cannot afford an editor or proof-reader. They'll get there eventually if the story is solid. 

Every book has mistakes, so I don't let that bother me. I care more about the story line. The biggest thing I see in self-pub books is 'telling' instead of 'showing'"

7. Head-hopping

"Something that's a problem for me as a reader is when it's not clear whose perspective we're supposed to be seeing ("head-hopping"). 

I find head hopping to be annoying. I prefer to see one POV per chapter or distinctly separated. For me minor grammar mistakes don't bother me. I understand that a book is a huge document and there will be mistakes that slip through especially with self-publishing authors. I do get annoyed when the mistakes mount up. It makes it look like the writer did not even bother to edit what they wrote."

8. One character with different names

"I have been reading mostly Ebooks lately and what gets me is you are reading along and all of a sudden a character has a different name. Later in the book they go back to the original name."

9. Undeveloped plot/Unrealistic characters

"If a story isn't well thought out, I have trouble finishing. I also have trouble with unrealistic characters. I can live with grammar mistakes if they're minimal."

10. Inconsistent tenses
 
"I'll only give up on a book if it is rife with jumping from present to past too much, or is filled with perspective shifts that make the story and its characters confusing. Even then, if I am able to contact them, I often send a polite email telling them of the areas where I think they can improve and give them examples."

11. Poor storytelling

"It's not an error that bothers me, it's when an author mires a story down in description and forgets that there is still a story to tell. Just my opinion, for what it is worth."

12. Poor sentence structure/elevated language

"Failure to vary sentence structure and length makes it difficult for me to get through a book. This goes hand in hand with elevated language and thought. I don't mean a bunch of five-dollar words, or paragraphs that wax poetic about the mysteries of the universe, just a sense that the writer takes the craft of writing seriously. Know what I mean?"

13. Characters

"Too many characters at the start. It is confusing, full stop."

14. Exclamation marks

"Too much!!!!! Exclamation points should be used sparingly or they lose their meaning."
 
15. Repetition/dialogue

"It bothers me when authors are too repetitive. You don't have to tell me what happened in the last chapter. I just read it. Also when dialogue switches back and forth and I can’t tell who is speaking."

Thank you for stopping by. Please share your comments, so I know you stopped by. It gives me great pleasure to read your views.
 

You remain unforgettable.
  
Love, 
Stella 

Flirty & Feisty Romance 


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