Sunday, 28 March 2010

What's Your Secret Weakness?

Mine is musicians. :P

Yesterday's post on Addicted to Adverbs got me thinking - what are some secret weaknesses that authors have? Or readers? I mean, anyone can say, "Dialouge is a challange for me," but what is it exactly? My characters all seem to talk in the manner of Elmer Fudd? Whenever I type quotation marks, I suddenly start thinking in a southern accent? My characters talk, but only in ancient Greek?

Really, what is the skeleton in the closet?

For me, I'd have to say my most severe weakness is a tendency to wimp out - by which I mean, take a climactic scene (or chapter... or book...) and have the ending sort of go "vrrvrrrrVrrrrVRrrrrVRRRVROOOOOOOOOVRRRROOOOOpffft."
Like... this one epic story about a prince and this awesome chick lady who helps him become a king, and their AWESOME battle against the evil lady/sworn enemy who DIES at the end. BUT THERE'S STILL AN ARMY TO KILL! (save that for the sequel) And it ends with them walking out of the forest they killed her in, just chatting about how cool life is.
And I read it over, and was like... um... they almost died. The country's war-torn. There's still a huge flipping army waiting for them. Why are they CHATTING!?


Luckily, I caught on to that one. I still have a tendency to wimp out (especially when I'm tired and the scene just won't end) but I'm getting better. Next weakness. This one is so much worse, but not as obvious. Are you ready?


Yes, vampires. I love writing about vampires. I've written about vampires since I was 13, and let me tell you, those stories were good. Except, you know, the fact that they were about vampires. Not that it's impossible to write about vampires anymore, but they've sort of become the Celine Dion of fiction, especially YA. When someone gets up to sing at a Karaoke bar, there's a very high likelihood that you'll be hearing, "My heart will go oooooooooon and ooooooooooooooooooon!"

Does this mean the song can't be sung well? No. Does it make it a little harder for a respectable singer to get away with the Titanic? Yes. Does it make it a lot harder for a novice to dare to approach the song everyone else is singing, even with a new take - say, hip hop? Yes. Does this mean that this song has been song in so many ways, even a new version is sort of the same old thing? Yes.

But vampires are so much fun. Even when they're not the good guys, who doesn't want to write about a sexy blood-drinker, and the innocent, wide-eyed girl with extreme unknown courage (and vast amounts of stupidity) who turns him good?

The deep-fried oreos of forbidden love fiction.

Maybe if there was a story about a goody-two-shoes vampire who just happens to kill people and a bad-boy motorcyclist she turns into a humanitarian. That could be cool.

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