1.) Pretty Girl in Prom Dress Syndrome
Does your book have a pretty model wearing a prom or wedding dress? Then I probably am sitting here rolling my eyes at the marketing department. I don't know why this trend started. 95% of the time it has nothing to do with the book. If your book is about some poor chick who never wears a pretty dress, and especially if she is described as not being pretty, then why the hell is there a pretty girl in a prom dress? What does this have to do with anything? As a 24 year old female reader of YA fiction, I am finding myself increasing turned off by these covers, and chances are young male teenage readers are going to have no interest in a book with this type of cover. They don't want kissy and feely, they want ACTION. Pretty girls in prom dresses more often than not aren't going to be badass.
2.) Love Triangles
This is nothing new, but seriously. I have trouble getting one boyfriend that isn't a complete idiot or slob or idiot slob. Boring 16 year old girls suddenly at the center of a testosterone war between hot, sweaty teenage man meat? Gurl...
3.) Physical Book and E-book Pricing (from my friend Bethany)
Now, I’m not the brightest candle in the Menorah, but even I know there’s something fishy going on when even e-books go up in price. (Not to mention the fact that I’m just a little ticked about it as well.) I’ll admit that it’s like a drug addict griping about the cost of his crack, since he’ll just go ahead and pay up anyway, but the matter still stands. How are people supposed to be enlightened and/or entertained when they’re having to pay more?!
I understand that the wants and needs of the user groups have changed. I understand that this is a bad economy. Heck, I even understand that the price of paper is probably going up (as well as everything else). Is that a reason to take it out on the books? Remember that books are one of many forms that entertain the populace. Does “bread and circuses” ring a bell? Because with pricey books, you’re going to have a bunch of unhappy hoi polloi on your hands.
4.) Bethany's....Other Rant
My second gripe is this. Please, for the love of all that is holy, stop with what you publishers think to be paranormal or dystopian fiction. First of all, it’s a little awkward going to the bookstore only to be faced with a shirtless (underaged) teenager who’s supposed to be some sort of sexy creature. I have to avoid that section altogether now, so that I won’t look like a creepy twenty-something stalking the jailbait. Thanks. But the fact is that they’re way overdone and mislabeled to begin with.
5.) Barnes and Noble's YA Section
Dear Barnes and Noble,
By separating YA books into "Teen Paranormal" (mostly paranormal romances and other kissy books) and "Teen Action and Adventure" (dystopians and other stuff, often times with kissy elements), you are basically saying "Girl Books" and "Boy Books That Mostly Cater to Girls". And to be honest, half the books in either section fit into the other just as easily. Lots of paranormal romances have action. Lots of action and adventure books have paranormal. Can't we go back to just a big "Young Adult" section like we had in my teenage years?
6.) Book Trailers
Yeah, I've complained about this before. If you want to read why, go find the Book Brats View where I discuss it. It's rather funny.
7.) NO MORE ABUSIVE LOVE INTERESTS
YA heroines, listen up. If your love interest in controlling, stalkerish, trying to kill you, or all of the above, please, run away. That isn't sexy. He doesn't love you. That's just creepy.
I want to hear YOUR bookish grievances for 2011, or just overall. This is meant to be a fun discussion post about things you want to see more of, less of, things to love, things to hate, and things to be confused over.
And remember to make your donation to The Human Fund. It's money for people.