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[personal profile] leaflitter
Started over at [livejournal.com profile] seanan_mcguire.


Completely over-the-top levels of world-building, ie that Tolkien thing. I know from experience that it's possible to do this at the expense of writing anything with an actual plot and I'm not saying that's a good thing, but still.

Sexual frenemies. I'm guessing there's a better term for this ("fuck frenemies" to parallel fuck buddies?), but I'm thinking of Holmes and Adler in Sherlock Holmes for example. They meet up, they have sex, they do their best to mess with each others' lives, but no hard feelings right? You'd do the same to me with interest and you know it.

Functional relationships that have existed for a long time, be they marriages or colleagues or other such. People who know that she knows that he knows that she knows that his snoring bugs her, and can joke about it. Having established that, I like it when they get something done together.

Telepaths. I think Roald Dahl's Matilda started me on that.

Redemption arcs, up to a point (onscreen brutal murder is well past that point, say). When I first read LOTR, for example, I fully hoped and expected that Saruman would get one, after the Council of Elrond chapter.

History or contemporary AUs with magic.


Con artists. I have the same reaction to them that many people do to someone being embarrassed or humiliated on screen generally, ie, con artist squick I guess. Makes me cringe.

Plots that turn on someone not telling someone else things.

More than about a chapter of knowing something that the narrator does not yet know themselves (with rare exceptions, for example, if the narrator is supposed to be highly unsympathetic as in Pale Fire).

Inexplicable prolonged failure to act on mutual attraction. Failure to act on mutual attraction is fun in the case of, eg, existing relationships, class or other power barriers, strong social mores forbidding some trait this coupling would have, blackmail, uncertainty whether other person is in the first person's oppressed sexual minority or not, all kinds of various similar things, but not so much in the case of "um, he sure is hot but… um? [handwave] not sleeping with him until the end of the novel! now [sigh, lust, sigh]"

Ancestors and descendants who are very very alike, as in how Neal Stephenson's Baroque Cycle characters resemble their 500-years-on descendents' personalities in Cryptonomicon.

History or contemporary AUs with magic where it's really not all that plausible that a world with magic that works that particular way turned out so much like ours.

Epic journeys with sore feet, narrow ledges, sleep deprivation, forced marches, the need to run for an entire night and a day, and so on. Or rather, it's fine for it to happen but I don't want to feel like I was in the party at the time. Less bothersome if only the most dramatic interludes are shown. ("DRAMA then they sailed for 40 days without incident then DRAMA".)

Redemption arcs in which a redeemed man ends up with the same woman he badly hurt, pre-redemption. Part of redemption (in my narrative kink world) is realising that sometimes, you have to forge new relationships rather than continuing to inflict yourself on the person you hurt worst of all. (As such, it doesn't apply to, eg, a situation where the woman knew the man only slightly pre-redemption.)

Ambivalent motherhood. I know it happens and happens a lot. And I know perfectly well that you can't break up with your kid, but even so I end up reading long-running ambivalent mother stories and it doesn't do anything more for me than 300 pages about a woman who should break up with her partner.

Date: 2011-11-16 06:47 pm (UTC)
tiferet: cute girl in pink dress captioned "not all bad girls wear black" (Default)
From: [personal profile] tiferet
Hilariously, LW had items on both lists.


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