Twelve Fiction Pet Peeves

Dear readers: You will LOVE this, by a friend and former colleague. Sort of “You Knew What I Meant” macro….

Sonya Huber

Me in sophomore year of high school, I think. All those things we shouldn't have done.  That hair.... another pet peeve. Me in sophomore year of high school, I think. All those things we shouldn’t have done. That hair…. another pet peeve.

I’m reading fiction for Dogwood today, and here’s what I’m noticing in stories that strike me the wrong way. Some of these, of course, irritate me because I have done these exact things when I used to write fiction.
1. When a main character’s first problem is that he or she is bored.
2. Puns in the title. I love puns. But not in the title.
3. A flurry of people introduced in the first paragraph.
4. A flurry of people with trendy androgynous names in the first paragraph. Karp, Jae, Ren, Jasp, whatever. People often have dorky and awkward names in real life, not these little moments of sculpture. Don’t give them the names you wish you had.
5. A kid setting a fire for no reason.
6…

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About RAB

Teacher of English writing and literature (college-level); academic-freedom activist; editor and copy editor; theater director, costumer, actress, playwright. View all posts by RAB

2 responses to “Twelve Fiction Pet Peeves

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