Archive for Writing Style

When authors break all the rules and it doesn’t work.

Posted in Books, Entertainment, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , on November 20, 2012 by urbannight

Cover Art

Today’s blog is sitting in the Save Draft folder right now.  I finished my book on break and needed a book for lunch.  Lucky for me, today is the book sale and there were three paperback, fluffy novels.  I picked Janet Evanovich’s Wicked Business.  I’ve read maybe one or two of her stand alone books.  I’ve never read her long series.  I’m really not all that familiar with her work other than that she has been around for a while.  After the first two paragraphs, I had to come write up my thoughts already.

Opening paragraph.  The character describes herself.

Hi my name is Blankety Blank.  My hair is this color.  But it comes from a bottle.  My eyes are this color, the same as this relative.  I’m so tall.  My breasts stick out enough and I have a definite waistline.  I had a good, if average, childhood.  I learned a trade, met someone I didn’t marry, and inherited a house from a relative that died.

Yes, I paraphrased.  But that is the EXACT structure of the first paragraph.  This would have been so much more interesting if it came out as part of the story.  I’m not sure if this is book one or book two.  Even if it isn’t the first book, we don’t need an ‘info-you-should-already-know’ section.  Just put the needed bits and descriptions woven into the whole.

Paragraph two in a few words.  Life was good and I finally felt like an adult.

Paragraph three describes the two men who come into her life. 

Guy A is called This.  handsome, black hair over his ears, pale skin, dark eyes, and intentions that are darker.  Buy B is called That.  Big and scruffy, bit of a bum, an attitude, and charming.

Guess what?!?!  Dspite the different names and a pet monkey, she just told me that the to male leads in the book are basically Sam and Dean Winchester from Supernatural.  Really.  Even the second guy’s name started with a D. 

Oh, and Paragraph four: they are part of a loosely organized band of humans that are a bit out of the ordinary.

Maybe it is me.  Maybe is the fact I’ve watched Five seasons of Supernatural in about as many weeks.

I’m more than a little annoyed about the writing style. I’ve always heard good things about Evanovich and this is a let down.  I’m still going to read it.  Dang book cost me nearly 10$ and I still have part of lunch during which to read.

You know, I really have to add a bit here.  A few pages later, you find out that the two men are cousins.  One is a bounty hunter of a type.  The other just is.  The first is responsible for keeping the second out of too much trouble because he has a tendency to go dark side.  And all of the first’s dialogue sounds exactly like things Dean would say. So the whole ‘Supernatural’ knock off vibe is still going strong.