I am reading a book I do not particularly like and it’s been a little rough for me. I refuse to give up because I want to like it so much…but I can’t. The premise is incredible, the cover amazing, but my internal editor is freaking out over the repetitive use of words and phrases sometimes within the same paragraph!
We know this can and does happen even with new releases. None of us are immune. We all have our tics that we don’t see as clearly as we'd like (my overuse of the words ‘but’, ‘almost’, and ‘just’ top the list), but hopefully we catch as many as we can before it hits the shelves. However, the one thing that I can’t overlook is a voice that just isn't authentic to the story.
This is YA and I actually had to look up a word to see what it meant*. If I don’t know what it means you can bet my teenager doesn’t either, and would definitely not be able to use it in a sentence. Even if he did know, he wouldn’t use it because his friends would give him an atomic wedgie while dancing around him in a circle, chanting. Yes, his high school is strikingly similar to Lord of the Flies.
But I will finish this book, regardless of how I feel. Because it isn’t just the good books that make us better writers, it’s the bad ones as well. And honestly, is there ever really a bad book? Or is personal taste getting in the way of our objectiveness?
* I’m pretty well read and although my education was not the finest, it was more than adequate to place me in a professional field. In other words…I am not an idiot. I hope. At least not most of the time and never in public. Unless I'm drinking. Then none of this applies.