Last week on the Mountain Springs House tour participants were asked to write about what their pet peeves are when writing. These posts were supposed to be on a guest blog. I was unable to host and post last week due to my illness. I thought I would share with my readers what I would have posted.
My Writing Pet Peeves
What a great topic for discussion. One of my greatest personal pet peeves when it comes to writing is noise. I use to be able to write with music in the background but I have found over the years that I work best when there is silence. Writing takes alot of hard work because in order to make a story successful I have to make sure the story stays on track. Inspiration is great but it can only lead you so far. I have to keep in mind not only the character arc but the story arc as well. Sometimes my secondary characters will want to hijack the story. I have to pay attention to the outline to make certain that doesn't happen. When my secondary characters get out of control I will often write down their ideas and save it for another writing piece. You just never know where their stories will take you.
My other pet peeve is first person narrative. I don't like to read first person very much. When I had first written Calico I had written it in first person. I had shopped Calico out to several publishers and agents but everyone of them had denied me. Then one day a publisher, whom I had sent Calico to, contacted me with these words, "You have a wonderful story here with plenty of promise. The only problem I see is that it's written in 1st person narrative. If you would change it to 3rd it would stand chance of publication because it will deepen the story." You know what? She was right. After I changed the narrative, Calico was picked up by a publishing house in Indiana and became a bestseller on Amazon almost overnight.
First person narrative is great when the author and the characters are trying to get to know each other but it's not a good device to use when trying to write your book. Third person narrative allows the reader to dig deeper into the mind of the characters. It's also easier to follow the characters when you are in third person because you are not hearing the story from just one character's point of view but are able to form your own opinion about the characters based on what you see in their thoughts and actions.
I generally do not like to read anything written in first person narrative because I feel the author has done me a disservice by not allowing me the opportunity to get know all of his/her characters on a deeper level. Yet, there are a few 1st person narratives I have read, such as the Hunger Games books and The Host. That doesn't mean I will read just any 1st person narrative. I only read those books because there were alot of people telling me how good they were.
What are your pet peeves when it comes to reading or writing?
In the harsh northwestern frontier of Ohio and Kentucky, a prophecy has been told. A man whose heart appears pure shall deceive her. The power he holds over her will lead her to evil. She shall denounce the ways of Our Grandmother. Another man comes, whose pure heart beats for her alone, and who has a pure spirit devoted to the goddess, Our Grandmother. He shall defeat the evil and set her free. Calico Marie Turner, a white woman raised by the Shawnee and destined to become a great medicine woman, must trust the one man who hates her the most. How can she trust Chief Little Owl Quick as the Wind to save her from his best friend and village shaman, Hunting Bear?