Thursday 13 – August 26, 2010

The purpose of this meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. You can find the unofficial Thursday 13 page here.

13 Bookish Things That Tend to Turn Me Off

1. Short Stories – I just can’t handle short stories. I find I just start to get into them and fall in love with the characters and BAM it’s over. I don’t mind so much if the short stories are taken from longer works, so then I know I can go somewhere else to get the rest of the story and get to know those characters better.

2. Series – Series of any kind turn me off completely. I can’t think of a single one I have ever read. Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter and, more recently, the Hunger Games (whatever the heck that is) have all failed to capture my attention.

3. Horror Novels – I think this is just a matter of not wanting to soil myself. I can’t watch horror films either, at least not by myself. I have never understood the logic behind this genre. Why anyone would voluntarily scare themselves stiff is beyond my comprehension.

4. Disappointing Chunksters – I read a LOT of chunksters…my definition being anything over five hundred pages. I just tend to gravitate towards them. It is amazing what a good author can do with six or seven hundred pages. It is equally amazing the complete drivel that a poor author can fit into the same number of pages. The thing with these books is that you often have to invest two or three hundred pages before you discover which category it fits into. It’s always a pain to discover you have ventured so far all for nothing.

5.  Hardcovers – This isn’t really a big deal. When I was a kid I used to have a hardcover fetish, but nowadays I much prefer to read paperbacks. They are light and flexible and overall more esthetically pleasing I find.

6. Vampire / Zombie / Etc. Novels – I have grown weary of seeing the unending reviews for this type of fiction. At one time I had planned on reading Bram Stoker’s Drakula, but not anymore. I figure I have to punish Bram Stoker for starting all this nonsense in the first place. (No offense intended to you folks who read nothing but this shi…ummm…stuff)

7. Flighty Prose – I pine for the many stories whose magnificence have been lost in the lake of flighty prose that can sometimes devour entire works of fiction. This is perhaps my own fault for delving into literary fiction in the first place, but what can I say? I still grieve for these lost stories.

8. Poor Translations – I really, really love reading literature from other cultures. Some of the best authors out there have yet to have their works translated into English, I am sure of it. It is a terrible tragedy when stories are poorly translated into English. I have read a few that have resembled the equivalent of grammatical alphabet soup splattered against the pavement.

9. Pre-20th Century Literature – This is not to be critical of truly classic literature, but I cannot read it myself. My idea of classic is D.H. Lawrence, H.G. Wells and Ernest Hemingway. What do I say about Charles Dickens or Jane Austen? No can do…can’t go anywhere near them.

10. E-books – Now, I can’t say this will always be the case, but my recent attempts to expose myself to electronic books has not gone very well. I love the feel and smell of books too much. I need to be able to flip back and forth to check things I might have missed or forgotten. I am also really worried about the potential for literature to join music and video in becoming the booty of pirates. I have too much respect for literary artists to see their work become pillaged by those who would think to steal it.

11. Audiobooks – Oh…no…wait,strike that one. I am now a HUGE fan of audiobooks. I hope to have something up in the next couple of weeks about my first audiobook experience with The Help by Kathryn Stockett.

12. Introductions – I always used to read introductions with out much bother. Recently, however, I have read several introductions that didn’t go over well with me. They either contained spoilers of one sort or another, or I felt as though they were telling me how I should feel about the book. That is almost worse than the spoilers, really!! I don’t like going into a story with preconceived notions. No more introductions for me.

13. Ummmm…13? – Isn’t it the Thursday 12? Oh, my bad, I guess I’ll have to keep that in mind for next week. Happy Thursday everyone!!


About Robbie

Hi there, my name is Robbie Burns (no,really, that’s my name…hold the haggis jokes please) and I would like to welcome you to the Pink Sheep Cafe. I started this blog as a means of discussing books and all things literary in light of my perpetual isolation. At the time I began writing, I was living in Split, Croatia. There wasn’t much here in the way of English book clubs and I couldn’t work, so I badly needed something to help me bide my time. My partner and I have since left Croatia and returned to Canada to live in Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories. When we first moved back here, my blog writing sort of fell by the wayside, but now I seem to be back on track. I try to read and review a little bit of everything here; I think everyone can find something to their liking here. I find myself tending more towards more literary reads these days, but I also enjoy a lot of YA and children’s fiction. One of my ongoing goals is to work my way through all of the Nobel Laureates. My two most favorite authors are Timothy Findley and Halldor Laxness.
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13 Responses to Thursday 13 – August 26, 2010

  1. Pirates are already causing problems with books – not just ebooks but the printed ones too. You really don’t like series? 🙂

    • Robbie says:

      Can’t stand series Shelley…I really just want to read a book and not have any obligation to have already read others or to read others in the future.

  2. Alley says:

    I’m totally with you on hardcovers and poor translations. Hardcovers look pretty but they’re such a pain to carry around with you.

    I do have to respectfully disagree about points 1, 2, 3 and 6 though. Think of a series as one of the chunksters, only broken down into smaller bits. I have no idea what Hunger Games is about either though. And for 6 I’m not actually a fan of vampire novels but Pride & Prejudice & Zombies was hilarious and World War Z was well written, although it definitely falls under horror so you may want to skip that one.

  3. rikkiscraps says:

    I like short stories a lot if they are well written. Give me one of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s anytime!

    On no. 6, no no, don’t blame Bram Stoker, there are a couple of others before him. I highly recommend “Carmilla” by Sheridan Le Fanu. It goes against your no. 9 as well, but you might want to have a look anyway, it is probably the first GLBT vampire story ever.

  4. Holly says:

    I do not like short stories at all; they do not give me enough time to connect with the characters. Horror novels and movies aren’t my thing either; they just come off as cheesy. I’m going no where near e-books until I absolutely have to; the sights and smells of a book, as well as the sound of flipping a page, is too beautiful to give up. Happy Thursday!

  5. Ready or not here they come. Ebooks are here and they are coming fast and large.
    No comment on the series lol Just because I’ve written one *wink
    Happy T13!

  6. CountryDew says:

    Wow. I like series and have read a good many. I agree with you on the vampire books and horror. I don’t get the appeal of either.

  7. Alley says:

    There’s an award for you over at my blog!

  8. sherilee says:

    Interesting list! I am not into the horror genre at all, but can happily handle short stories–I have a favorite volume of Margaret Atwood’s–and adore audiobooks as they keep me happy while I garden. And my Kindle is another happy thing–getting to download sample chapters before I commit saves me money!

  9. snarkster says:

    i can’t handle short story collections either, although, i can’t seem to write anything more than that myself. hmf.

  10. jill conyers says:

    Interesting read. I prefer a series and I like the vampire stuff. I do agree with the short stories.

  11. Kinna says:

    Oh, you got me at the first point. I love short stories. Though I do understand your issues, what can I con to change your mind?

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