I just finished my first novel for the second time and all I have to say is “ugh”. I’m almost dreading what my alpha reader is going to have to say about it, especially the last four chapters. Any bad thing she could say is going to be 100% true. I have completely run out of steam while writing this book for the past three years. At least I’ve learned what not to do. And now I have the first big stinker out of the way, and I can move on to bigger and better things. Ugh. Just ugh.
So, since I have no life, I spend the majority of my time writing or watching YouTube videos. I’ve been super into BookTube these past few months, and I noticed this tag floating around. Normally I hate when people do tag or challenge videos because it means that they don’t have ideas of their own, but I decided I’d make an exception for this tag. I like that it’s controversial. So, without further ado- the Unpopular Opinions Book Tag.
1) A popular book or series that you didn’t like.
I’m going to start with controversy right off the bat. Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell was a huge disappointment for me. People always say that it’s the best of her books, and I did really like the beginning of it. But then I was just mad and vaguely uninterested throughout the remaining 2/3 of the book. I much prefer Fangirl and Carry On.
2) A popular book or series that everyone else seems to hate, but you love.
The classic- Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. People hate it now, and understandably so. I would probably hate it if I picked it up for the first time right now. But the nostalgia just won’t leave me. I can’t help myself.
3) A love triangle where the main character ended up with the person you didn’t want them to end up with.
This one is kind of hard for me because I avoid books with love triangles like the plague. And when I didn’t, I was twelve and easily swayed to like anyone the main character liked. I’m just going to go with Katniss and Peeta from The Hunger Games. And not even because I liked Gale. I didn’t. I didn’t want Katniss to end up with anyone because she seemed utterly miserable and like she didn’t really love Peeta at the end of the series. I feel like she would have prefered to be alone.
4) A popular book genre that you hardly reach for.
Classics. Classics so much. I hate a majority of them.
5) A popular or beloved character that you do not like.
Another one that could get me murdered- Will Herondale from The Infernal Devices. Otherwise known as old-fashioned Jace Wayland. They are literally the same character in the first books of their respective series. I probably would have loved these books if I had read them when I was twelve, but now I know better. He’s the typical YA love interest and I hate it.
6) A popular author that you can’t seem to get into.
I feel like this is going to be a really off-the-wall answer, but in the interest of not repeating answers (Cassandra Clare is one I can’t get into), I’m going to say R.L. Stine. I remember trying to read Goosebumps books when I was younger and thinking that they were really dumb. And I recently tried to read one of the new books from the Fear Street series, but I couldn’t get into it. His books felt too young for me even when I was in the demographic.
7) A popular book trope that you’re tired of seeing.
Love triangles, first and foremost. The rude, brooding love interest who no one can have an actual healthy relationship with. The incapable female protagonist. The never-ending series. The cover with a girl in a dress on it. I’m sure I could go on forever.
8) A popular book or series that you have no interest in reading.
The Fault in Our Stars. I’m so sorry, but I can’t bring myself to do it. I read Paper Towns and I liked it, and I have more John Green books in my TBR, but for some reason, I have zero interest in The Fault in Our Stars. (The runner up for this answer is the Divergent series by Veronica Roth. Maybe I just have an aversion to Shailene Woodley.)
9) The saying goes, “The book is always better than the movie”, but what movie or TV show adaptation do you like better than the book?
My answer for this one isn’t fair, since I haven’t actually read any of the books. I tried to read the first one, but it was too similar to the TV show, which I had already seen, so I got bored. Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. I tried to read the book for a solid year before I gave up. The TV show is just too good. (The runner up for this one is Breaking Dawn Part Two. I liked what they did with the battle in the movie.)
I sat for a solid 15 minutes trying to think of another question to add to this tag so that this numbered list would be at an even 10. I think I’m just going to have to post it as is though. Ugh, it’s going to drive me crazy. Anyway, what are your unpopular book opinions?
In my little section of the planet, the new year will be here in just over seven hours. This year is going to be my biggest one yet, I have no doubt. And it’s not because I’m making all kinds of vows to change my life because of the date on the calendar. No, 2016 is going to be a big year for me simply because of where I am in life.
In 2016, the first thing that will happen is that I will finish my novel. Like, finished for good with all the edits and everything. It’s been a long time coming, and I’m glad to see that it’s finally, finally here.
The next couple of things will happen all around the same time. I’ll see my last show at my high school with all the familiar cast faces that I have grown to love. I’ll go to a formal school dance for the first and last time when I show up to prom with my friends, looking hot as hell. I’ll walk through the doors that I have walked through every day for four years for the last time. I will graduate from high school, and probably cry a lot during it. I will see all of the familiar faces, the people I have grown up with, for the last time until ten years later when we come back to brag about our wonderful, successful lives.
Probably during all of that mess, I will start a new novel and work on getting the first one published.
I will, at last, get to quit my job. This might be the thing I’m most excited for (I have a running countdown).
Even scarier than graduating high school, I am going to start college. I will live away from home for the first time, maybe out-of-state, maybe not. It’ll be a completely new environment with completely new people. Scary, but exciting.
And lastly, but certainly not leastly, I will vote in my first presidential election. I’ll vote for the first time, period. I Feel the Bern, guys.
So when I say that 2016 is going to be a big year for me, I can say it without the fear of failing at resolutions. These are things that are all but definite, and I am looking forward to each and every one of them. Seven more hours until it all starts. Happy New Year, everyone.
I am so close to being done with the second-ish draft of my novel. I just need to do a quick edit of the last four chapters that I just wrote, and then they can be sent off to my alpha reader. My worst nightmare with this ending would be for my alpha reader to tell me that it’s too rushed, or that I should make any significant plot changes. I physically cannot keep writing this novel.
I had an epiphany not long ago that this book is not going to be the Big Kahuna for me. To be quite honest, this novel is shit. There are some good things about it, but not enough. It reads like a first book. And since realizing this, all I have wanted to do is move on. I’m so excited for my next project, and I just want to get to it. I have been quickly losing steam on novel #1, and I’m afraid that I won’t be able to finish it at all.
Three years. I have given this book three years of my life, and I have to finish it. It would be very disappointing if I didn’t. But I’m afraid that if it requires much more work, I’m not going to be able to finish it. I just want something to show for these three years.
So what about you? At what point do you give up on a project, if ever? How do you pump yourself up so that you can finish something that you’re losing interest in? Give me all the advice.
I have watched Heathers The Musical three times in the past 24 hours, along with regular Heathers once. As I watched teenagers being murdered by the ultimate power couple, I started to ask myself why I love JD so much. He is literally a psychopathic murderer, and yet I have a huge crush on Christian Slater because of that movie. And he’s not even the only killer character that I love (see Tate from American Horror Story, Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Khal Drogo from Game of Thrones, Sweeney Todd from, you know, Sweeney Todd, and, damn, even Edward from Twilight killed a few people in his day).
What’s more is that I know I’m not the only one who is in love with these murderers. People are obsessed with these characters, and my question is why? Basic morals tell us that we should hate these people, but we are attracted to them instead. Is it our society which has sort of bred us to crave the “bad boy” who’s really only “himself” around us? Is it some strange mixture of the simultaneous expression and repression of sexuality, sprinkled with vibrant violent imagery that’s thrown in our faces on a semi-regular basis? Probably, but I think there’s also a bit of nature mixed in with that nurture.
We have this whole “fascination with death” thing going on. It’s life’s biggest mystery, so we can’t help but be a little obsessed with it. I believe it’s why horror movies are so popular. Some part of us, no matter how small, is drawn to that strange darkness because we aren’t supposed to be. It’s the forbidden fruit thing. Mix that with the pretty face and you have one hell of a recipe for a crush, apparently.
Aren’t humans just strange and lovely creatures?
The plot of the last half of my novel has changed three times in the last 24 hours. I’ve had so many revelations within this day-long period that it physically exhausted me. Here is my thought process:
Forget the ending that I’ve been planning on, it’s not satisfying enough. We’ll end this book on sort of a cliffhanger. Book two will be so much more political, and it’ll be an epic duo.
Wait, though. I probably shouldn’t kill her mom, right? It’s a stupid thing to do. But also, this book is stupid and it will never sell. I want to move on to something else, not spend another three years finishing up this crap. The political novel should just be a completely different story.
You know what would be cool? If I made this book a parody of YA at the end. Like, everything goes the opposite of what you would expect and it kind of makes fun of the genre. No one but me will like it, but I’m gonna do it.
No, I was wrong- that’s a stupid idea too. I can’t do that. The parody would be better reserved for an entire book, not just to finish up this one. I know what I’ll do- I’ll smoosh together these last two ideas to keep it serious YA, but I’ll also just keep it at this one book so I can move on to bigger and better things. I have made my decision, and that’s it.
Now, as I write this, I’m already second-guessing the decision I thought I had made when I started writing this post. Good god, I’m so indecisive. I think I’ll actually just roll on the floor and moan for a while instead of finishing this book. Is that a legitimate decision?
Sometimes I read bad books to make myself feel better about my own writing. Like, I start reading a book and I know that it’s terrible and I will hate it, but I keep reading. And as I read, I pick out all the things about it that are stupid and all the reasons my book is better. It makes me feel validated in this topsy-turvy writing world.