Monday, January 12, 2015

Bookish Turnoffs

I have 350+ novels on my to-read list on Goodreads. Some of my friends have over a thousand. And these are just the books that made it to the list! What about the hundreds of others we've seen, but ignored? Why did we turn away from those ones?

To be honest, I know I've missed a ton of great books. Why didn't I give them a chance?

Reason Number 1: The blurb has too much information, or too little.

I want to know the plot, but I don't need the back story! That's kind of what THE BOOK ITSELF is for. Also, I hate seeing too many names. I don't know who they are because I haven't read the book yet. Keep the list small, or we all become Dories.
What It’s Like To Be In College, As Told By Our Favorite Disney Characters | Her Campus
Similarly, I want to know what the plot is. I'd rather not hear that character #1 is a headstrong servant and character #2 is some evil royal with a heart of gold. Obviously, they're going to clash. What makes this cliché different from all the other similar stories? Why should I care about these people?

Reason Number 2: When I scroll down to see the reviews, the first one to come up is a five star rating from the author.

If an author reviews their own book, Goodreads puts it on the top, so it will be seen. I can't pinpoint exactly why this bothers me so much though. Like, I get it: you're the author. Duh, you love your book. I know they want to have high ratings. But seriously, this is so cheap. It shows your desperation/pride to give your own book a five star rating. Now, if an author were to give their book a one star rating, I'd probably add it to my shelf simply because the author is so different from any I've seen. If they're willing to write a scathing review for their own book, I'm dying to see what other peculiarities are in the book itself!

Reason Number 3: It's from Createspace, Amazon, or Smashwords.

Some authors self publish and do an amazing job. These authors make me happy, because they clearly have put in a ton of work.

When NaNo offered to give all winners two free copies of their book (which they did again this year), I nearly went for it. And that would have been a huge mistake. I certainly wasn't ready to work with a publishing company, much less take on a self publishing one like Createspace! This will forever bug me about NaNo. Yeah, the copies of your book is free, but not the cover designer, an editor, marketing, ect. I would rather have a good book that took forever than a lousy book that I can publish right away.

I feel like I have to be extra nice to self published authors who have no idea what they're doing, but they should have known! The waters of being published at all are deep and stormy, so you have to be careful to do it right. I can't help it if you didn't.

Reason Number 4: It's about something we've all heard before.

I never again want to see a book about the smart, sassy girl falling in love with the bad boy. Ever.

Reason Number 5: It has a lame title.

I love Jill Williamson (as you probably know), but if you look up CaptivesOutcasts, or Rebels on Goodreads, it's going to take you a while to find the one you're looking for. I'm still going to read these books eventually, but only because of Jill Williamson. Without her name, getting my attention would be a lot harder. I do love books about brothers though....

Reason Number 6: It simply isn't for me.

You can't blame everything on the author, right? ;) Sometimes a book just doesn't look like something I'd want to read. For example, I don't know if I've even read any paranormal or horror books. They just aren't might type! Maybe I'd love some of them, but unless it comes with recommendations by people I know, I probably won't read it. Not the author's fault.

And there you have it! What makes your bookish turnoffs?
Running Through the Stars


  1. I have to agree with practically all of these! I'm easily turned off by stuff that looks too cliche or amaturish. However, I have been surprised by certain books that I didn't think I would enjoy, but I really loved. (-: And I need to read Jill Williamson's books...

    1. Absolutely! It bugs me so much that I've missed out on awesome books simply because of their first impressions. But without impressions, what else do we have to go on?
      AND OH MY GOSH JILL WILLIAMSON. You should totally start with By Darkness Hid. I knew that ending was coming, but I certainly wasn't expecting the form it took and all the emotions...gah. The second one isn't quite as good, and I haven't gotten to the third yet, but I really love Jill as an author. Her world building is amazing, and I can't wait to start Captives, which I just bought recently.

  2. The worst is the sassy girl and the bad boy! Ugh!

    1. Isn't it? I just want them to have developed personalities!

  3. Hey! I'm stopping by from the GTW Link-up. Yeah, I totally know the feeling from #3. I'm a self-published author, but I'm also a traditional author and I used the same guide-lines and professional editor for traditional and self-publishing. There are so many books out there though that *haven't* used a professional editor, professional cover designer, etc... and it makes my job of marketing my books a lot harder. :)

    1. Thanks for stopping by! Nice name, by the way. ;) Some people can self publish really well, but I've been badly burned before by people who didn't.