Monday, November 2, 2009

Turn Offs

Pamela Tracy here, talking about things in books that turn me off. You probably need a little history. I usually have three books going at one time: purse book (Usually one that isn't grabbing me but there's hope for); bathroom book (Usually a loser, last ditch effort. If it gets wet from the shower, I'm not depressed); and last, the book (I'm into this book, going to finish it soon, wish I had more time to read, and I take it wherever I go).

So, at the end of last week, my purse book suddenly took a turn for the better and became the book. I'm moving along. Suddenly, comes a scene where the heroine is in the wrong place at the wrong time. (She's found a secluded place to read during a party). I'm okay with this; I often wish I could find a corner and just read when I'm at a party. Then, a male and female enter the secluded place. Now, I'm okay with eavesdropping. But the male and female aren't coming to the secluded place to talk. (BTW, this is a sweet book). The heroine doesn't make her presence known.She doesn't make her presence known!

I stopped reading.

Now, the book is good; I want to know what happens, but to me, this scene was a deal breaker. It went into the eck factor. I take book to bathroom. Remember, now I no longer care if the shower warps this book. But, as the day goes on, I make it past the scene (which had her being discovered before eck).

I do know I'll finish the book, but I'm wondering... Will I buy another book by this author? See, I bought this one because I liked her last one. Also, I have very few eck factors (in sweet books... I feel like I have to keep saying that because there are lots of 'eck' factors out there, they just don't usually show up in my books).

So, what does it for you? Makes you say "Eck!"


  1. Lol! What a great system!!

    I think a BIG "eck" factor for me is when I feel like the author's books all follow a form. I understand that to some extent there will always be forms when writing novels, but when it becomes obvious and the author has just substituted new characters or gets really tiring.

    I just had another one come to mind, but lost it again! I'll come back and post it if it comes back to me : )
    P.S. Yes, I am one of those girls who carries around a book in her purse too. Everyone at school knows that I almost completely literally never go anywhere without a book! Lol....

  2. I'm always struggling with that! Especially in my own writing. Thanks for stopping by, Hannah.

  3. I have a bathroom book, too, but mind is a nonfiction. I can read that whenever because there is no plot that is calling me to read on. I don't hate my bathroom book, it's just a book that I don't mind reading over the course of a year whenever. I have a car book. My purse is too small for a book. I have a desk book that I read while my computer is booting up or when I need a break from writing my own. The books I really want to read are my trip books--books I read while flying and waiting in airport of when my hubby is driving and I'm a passenger. That's when I get most of my reading done.

  4. I purchased a small purse, once. Drove me nuts. Whenever I wanted to read, I didn't have a book. But, I do like a small purse.

  5. Too funny, Pam. I have a high tolerance for eck! I guess my sensibilities are too sensitive.
    Though I did read The Bone Garden by Tess Gerritsen. I love her books but this one definitely pushed my eck button. I think I actually gagged at some of the descriptions. But I finished it and it was a good story.

    I keep a purse usually in my car for carpool line, or doctor's offices.

  6. Uh, I mean a book in my car. Sorry. I'm too tired to be online right now.

  7. It's funny. I stopped reading The Shack because of the young child abduction theme (I have a young child). That's not what I call an 'Eck'. Sometimes when I'm reading a Kathy Reichs' novel her explicit descriptions of death give me the willies, but still not 'eck'. Still, in this particular book, the eavesdropping just plain made me uncomfortable.

  8. I too carry a book where ever I go. An "eck" factor for me is when the scene is moving along and I am really into what is happening...then the author decides to get too descriptive about something. I don't want to know how many buttons are on a jacket or how many books (exactly) are on a shelf. Please keep the action flowing.
    I have done some critiquing for a few authors over the years, and that is my biggest problem. Or "eck" factor.

  9. LOL!! I love this, Pamela. So cute that you rotate your books. :)

    One of my "Eck" factors is actually a "no way" factor. I can't stand it when a heroine is TSTL--too stupid to live. I mean, come on, woman, don't go somewhere that's obviously dangerous!! I just don't buy it. :)


  10. Mara,
    Thanks for stopping by. My critique group is always dinging me for doing that very same. LOL, in real life, I'm always distracted. It carries over to my writing.

  11. Missy,
    Yes, I stop reading, but it's not an 'Eck' turn-off. More a 'I'm disappointed in this author' turn.


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