Book Binge ’11 Reveals…

I have a hard time writing during the month of August. No idea why. It’s like my writerly self goes on vacation and she doesn’t return my calls or emails. I keep leaving mental voicemails like, “Hi! It’s me again. We totally left that character stranded. Let’s get together so we can fix it.” No dice. During August, Writer Becky just can’t be bothered.

But Reader Becky is CRAZY during August. With 25 new reads under my belt (across all genres, but mostly YA) I’ve identified some trends that make me laugh/crazy/jealous.  Are you seeing any of these things in the books you’re reading/writing?

  1. Lip Looking.  I’m not sure what characters are looking for…maybe lip fungus?…but apparently you can’t kiss/be kissed without studying the kissy/kisser’s lips.  Or maybe their just afraid to miss.  Is there anything worse than a corner-of-the-mouth kiss? 
  2. There is always time for a good make-out. Sure the villain’s breathing down their necks, the car’s going to explode, their trapped in a room that’s filling with water.  Whatevs. It’s time to hook-up!  I’d personally be a little more interested in finding an escape/solution than another person’s tonsils…but hey, I’m old. 
  3. Dying people talk a lot before they kick it.  I’m all about a bedside confessional, but good glory six paragraphs of dialogue later (don’t forget about the blood pouring out of the dying character’s mouth) you find out the main twist of the plot.  Ugh.  Just die already!
  4. Passionately in love with multiple people. Don’t get me wrong, a toasty love triangle totally works. Oh the drama!  The passion! The make-outs at inappropriate times/locations! But a committed relationship here and there could be nice…just saying. 
  5. People look like Greek statues. Do any of you actually know what the statue of Adonis looks like?  I googled it and I promise, David is better. But I get it, authors.  You are trying to say that the lusty character has a beautifully sculpted body. One thing: don’t use that comparison for girl characters.  Greek female statues are a little…lumpy.  Unless, of course, lumpy is the description you’re going for.   
  6. Teenagers avoid help from adults even when it makes the most sense. Call the cops already! I yelled that very sentence at one of my binge books.  If the whole plot could be solved by notifying the police, then you have a major hole.  I get that sometimes there is no evidence/your story is too far-fetched/you don’t want to get in trouble.  But in at least two of the books there were plenty of things the authorities could have done.  Groan. 
  7. Facial Ticks. Lips, eyebrows, mouth corners, jaw muscles.  They all do a lot of twitching.  The only time my eye twitches is when I’m really, really tired.  And I promise, it’s weirder than it is attractive.
  8. Rainbow Brite Hair.  Pink stripes, dyed blue underneath, magenta bangs.  Apparently, you’re either cool or a rebel if you’re hair is colored an unnatural hue.  Mostly, I think beauty-school drop out or circus freak. 
  9. Poor orthodontia/sexy scars. Man, a lot of characters have chipped teeth/crooked bottom teeth and/or facial scars (usually in eyebrows). It’s almost like that itty bitty flaw makes said character more human…and I guess it does cause my hubby has one.  Thus, I’m not embarrassed to admit that I have an MC with this little flaw (although his scar is under his chin and it’s actually part of the story). 
  10. Finding an ally in your worst enemy.  Yep, I get the irony.  And apparently it’s the way 87 percent of authors chose to use that particular literary technique…that’s an exact figure by the way. 
  11. Love at first sight.  I see you, I love you, you love me back.  I’ll die for you tomorrow. Good luck with that. 
  12. Hiding truth from best friend gets you in super awful trouble later.  Oh snap, MC betrayed their BFs trust/lied and BF rats them out/turns to the dark side. 
So I think that pretty much covers it.  Now, I’m not saying that these things are bad.  But they are recurring in a lot of the literature that I read in the last month. Trust me, I’ve got some of these things in my WIPs too.

Is there anything I’m missing? 


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