Thursday, April 19, 2012

My head aches from this

When I read a romance, I expect to find a plot. The main plot may be the relationship, or the relationship and the external plot may be equally important, but either way, it has to be there. "How are we gonna fuck?" is not plot. It may be PWP, but that's not what I was promised by the blurb.

When I read, I expect to find dialog that sounds like people might actually speak it. Yes, dialog in stories can't sound exactly like a conversation, you have to take out the ums, the pauses, the digressions into how the garden's looking and will there be rain, but it has to sound like real people are involved. If Siri can manage a better conversation, there's trouble. If the dialog sounds like a particularly dry textbook, there's real trouble.

When I read, I don't want to be intruded on by the author's life. I want to be in the story, I don't want to find myself thinking, oh, look, this must be a rewritten part when she switched publishers, it's so much better. I don't want to think, oops, must have been in a hurry to finish, she just wrapped 5 plot points in 3 paragraphs. I don't want to think about the author at all. I want to be engrossed in the story.

I've read some great things lately and I've read some disappointing things lately, not all of which got reviewed. The contrast is making my head hurt. That is all.


  1. Amen to that! I often feel as you do so take comfort that you're not alone in these thoughts. :)

  2. We should start a club or something. :)


  3. KUdos to you all! I can't count the number of times I've simply stopped reading a novel because it was terrible, much less finish it then form a coherent critique of it.

  4. It took a a while to realize the pattern, but there are books that contain an enormous amount of sex, then there are books that contain a lot of plot and story. I've seen reviews praising and bashing both. Then I realized it's a matter of personal taste. I found myself skimming massive sex scenes, and then the lightbulb came on. It's nothing against the author or book, it's just my preference. Now, I look for books that feature an amazing story, and I'm all for learning interesting facts along the way. Do I still reach for a PWP every once in a while, in much the way I would occasionally crave a cookie? Sure. But most of the books I've marked as keepers took me away from my daily life, totally engrossing me in another world, and when the story ended, I felt I was saying goodbye to a very dear friend.

  5. I'm like you Crissy, I like a good plot I need a story most of the mm writers seem in a hurry to rap up stories unless you read the raw works. If you have a Live Journal go on it and check out a writer blog called I.D.Locke, she's fantastic!!! She'll give you a good time...


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