What are your “red flags” in books?


I run away from books starting with “[name] is your average person.” Or “[name] is not your average person.”
I just hate that line. It’s so overused and it gives the idea that the author likes to tell rather than show.


Bad similes/metaphors and purple prose definitely for me. The only time I ever bought a book and could not bring myself to finish it was because of an author who wrote things like “Streetlamps lend the soft romance of the boulevard to drab, industrial Division Street.”


Ugh, totally. Add (counter)clockwise spinning to the list.


Apathetic main characters. Please care for something.

“Doesn’t care” or “Don’t care” in titles. Please care.


Right. Sometimes when people are writing just to write, then it feels like I am reading just to read. When an author cares about their book, I feel more with their words and think of the characters as real beings in a sense.


This reminds me of when we were reading Shakespear, (I think I spelled it right). There were so many fancy words that it was confusing and I couldn’t follow along. Like pleeeease. Just say “I was sad as I walked along the sidewalk” Something!


When someone use the japanese stuff like: “Oni-chan”,“Sama” and so on, if you are not japanese, DONT USE THEM


Honestly, I’ve never read a book that I’ve liked but hated the cover. And I’ve never read a book that I’ve disliked but liked the cover.

UPO:: I actually really like “purple prose,” when it’s done right or when it’s naturally in the story (like if the author just writes that way naturally or if it’s a scene/time period where it seems natural). When people use if just to make their work look “elegant,” it’s just bad and obvious.


I agree to an extent…

But can you clarify a couple questions I have on what you mean?

  • If the characters are Japanese or if the author is Japanese?
    The way you are stating it makes me question how far you mean. It’s like saying only French people can speak French.
    But if you mean the characters are saying it as a way that people use the word “Senpai,” then I understand what you mean.
  • But what if the characters are learning Japanese?

I think that Japanese things/words should be used in their correct context. Used otherwise and that’s where I draw my line personally.


Hey, give the guy a break - he died in 1616. Seriously, part of his genius was that he could write jokes in a multi-layered language that were appreciated simultaneously yet for different reasons by people of that age from lowest social class to the highest.


What’s an over structure story??? ( I agree with everything else)


If you make a history placed in Japan or character are learning Japanese and things like that, then obviously it would make sense that they use them, what bothers me is when people use them for the sake of using them even when they don’t make sense in the context of the history


Mmmm not like that thinks

Like, characters that don’t care about the plot of the story or the people around them. Cute girl? He doesn’t care. Fiery rival? Doesn’t care. People trying to make friends? Well, if you want, but won’t make an effort on their own. Chips or cookies? Don’t care. Date this guy or that guy? Can’t even be bothered to notice their emotions or give them an answer. In an army where you need to be a part of the group? Well, as long as you’re just a good fighter then that’s enough right?.. NO!

You do not get friends from letting them all come to you. You need to put in effort too. If you’re a gloomy thing stuck in the corner then people might come over a couple times, but if you aren’t engaged in the conversation they will not do this more than a couple of times. I don’t want to read about that character stuck in the corner. I want to read about the one seeing and caring about the world beyond their own nose, and I want to see them act on it.

If people skip this reality then the book is often just wishful thinking and dreaming, which to me is a sign of a book I will not enjoy.


I kind of have to disagree with this, not fully, but partly. On two points:

If it has nothing to do with the country, plot, history or genre of the book then it should not be there. This would indeed be a very awkward red flag. I’d feel quite awkward seeing -senpai in harry potter fanfic for no reason.

Fan-fiction of manga and anime use it liberally, and it’ll explain more for the target audience than ‘upperclassman lastname’ ever will. In the same way, genres that have a basis in Japanese light novels and follow those cliches will use it too, as even the translations of light novels keep these terms.

What should be kept (if at all) is titles and honorifics, things that doesn’t properly translate. What should never be kept is things like kawaii, after all, we have plenty of proper terms for this.


Cliche plots. Characters that are paper thin and transparent. Omg I hate when authors tie me up and drown me in DESCRIPTIONS. HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO DESCRIBE A CHAIR, KAREN?! Lol.

I also dislike slow beginnings. I have a busy life. I ain’t sitting through slow chapters where nothing’s happening and the author’s just describing something with ridiculously over the top prose. Like, weird flex, but okay. I get it. You know big and pretty words. I don’t need to deepthroat them, thank you, lmao.


My issue comes when a write relies solely on the quote to give me that insight. As long as the writing could stand alone in giving me that insight, I don’t mind if the poem/quote adds to it. Just do rely on the quote to give me the insight.


I think when people try to add too much substance to a story or try to explain every single detail in depth is when it can get over-structured. I think when people edit and edit and edit and edit and then edit some more is when it can become over structured. I think editing is so important and I usually edit my chapter up to 5 times before I post. However, I think that over can, obviously add to you story, but also take away a lot if you aren’t careful. I think a lot of times people are so focused on making sure every detail is perfected when sometimes that can make it worse in my opinion.


You created a very horrible image on my mind, Thak you!



Okay, I’m done yelling. I just really, really loathe when writers make huge, gaping hole mistakes because they lacked the credibility to actually write when they were writing. That’s my biggest red flag, but also at pet peeve. I’ve listened and watched professional writers AND newbies say that they don’t like to do research because it’s not needed.

Uh, no… that’s them being immensely lazy! End of story. That’s it. Done. Research before you write to complete the world is one of the most integral parts of making the world real.


When the main character dies, but is like “oh, lol i’m not dead”.

Then again, that happens a lot in PJO…