Love is Obsession?

I admit that at 20 years of age I am not worldly or experienced, nor have I read all the world of literature has to offer. However, it seems like recently, there is a new trend.

Obsession.

Now, obsession isn’t new. It’s been used before and I’ve read it portrayed accurately: as a character flaw.

I love my boyfriend. I am not obsessed with him. I don’t follow him around, go through his phone, or read through his emails. I don’t demand to be with him any second of the day or threaten bodily harm to anyone who touches him. That would not be sexy. That would be creepy.

Only… is it creepy? 50 Shades of Grey, Twilight, Apolonia, and Viper Game. These are all fairly new books that have not love, not romance, but obsession.

Christian Gray stalks Ana, buys her a new car without her permission, and doesn’t allow her to see her male friends.

Edward watches Bella while she sleeps in addition to all the creepy stuff E. L. James stole for 50 Shades.

In Apolonia, the main character is the interest of two boys, both of whom want to follow her around at all times.

Viper Games, a book I’m reading right now, has a main character who is genetically enhanced to be pretty and sexy, and the male lead threatens to kill his own best friends if they dare touch her. Literally, touch. As in, handshake. He tells her not to seduce another man or else she’ll be responsible for their deaths and he doesn’t want that.

*Sigh* Soooo romantic.

Do women want this? To be obsessed over? Is love no longer enough?

Obsession: an idea or thought that continually preoccupies or intrudes on a person’s mind

When a man obsessive over you, you are literally all he thinks about. There is no time for fun or games or work or personality, only you. That’s what the characters in these books are like and these books are flying off the shelves. What’s wrong with the market that this is what is selling? Is it something wrong with women? Have we been duped into believing that love isn’t enough, that we need fanatical devotion and obsession?

What are your thoughts on this? Is this a new trend, or just something I’m now picking up on?

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Stop Writing Gold, Start Writing Shit

Seriously. I urge you all to put down your pens (I’m kidding, I know we all use computers and spellcheck) and stop whatever great novel you’re writing. Throw it out and never look at it again. Forget everything about writing that you were ever told. Actually, turn off spellcheck too. Turn off all possible squiggly lines that might distract you from writing.

 sm

Now, come up with a super generic character. Just go down the checklist of Mary Sue characteristics and use everything there as the base for your character. She is super hot, but she doesn’t think so. All the boys love her even though she shows no interest in her. She is flat and lifeless and will make your readers want to stab her. Have the perfect character yet? Good. Moving on.

EL James

Now you need a love interest. Assuming your MC is a girl, the love interest has to be a boy. This is mainstream romance, people. Gay people don’t exist. Neither do transexuals, or people of color. Just straight white men throwing themselves at your MC. However, since your MC has so many men to chose from, your love interest has to be special. To make him special, we’re going to make him abusive. He’s going to stalk and harass and place ridiculous guidelines for your MC to follow. That makes him so super hot, right? You don’t even have to describe how attractive he is, just say “He’s, like, so hot” and your readers will just know.

nope

Next, you need a plot. Publishers want what sells, so you’ll need to write romance. There is no other genre, only romance. This means the entire story will be boring things between your MC and your love interest. Them talking about the love interest’s boring siblings. Making sandwiches together. Going from hating each other to loving each other in the same scene. Unrealistic make-out scenes. A pointless love triangle between your MC, the love interest, and some guy you know has absolutely no chance with the MC. (If you can’t come up with a plot, just steal all the characters and elements from a wildly successful young adult series and then change all the names.)

cat

Finally, you need to take that plot and stretch it out into at least three books. Four, if you can manage. Just throw in whatever scenes you can, they don’t have to make sense. Hell, none of it has to make sense. Just write the first crap that comes to mind and shove it on in there. Now you’ve got your gold.

grumpy

This all stems from this post about how some terrible One Direction fanfic is now being published. Also on that blog is an overview of each chapter and why it is horrible.  I have just given up on life, for the moment. I don’t even have time to write right now, but all I can think is “Oh, my writing is too good for publishing, maybe I should give up on punctuation!” I’m thinking of writing a fanfic of Obama’s family and make it so Mrs. Obama is having an affair with Kim Jong Whoever (you know who I’m talking about). That should get me some attention.

Preparing to submit for publishing!

First off, I changed the name of my blog and my picture for wordpress, so I hope that doesn’t confuse anyone.

Secondly, I’ve prepared my manuscript for printing so that I can use all the free print credits here at school and steal all their ink. I’m paying thousands in tuition, I deserve it. I still have to do a cover letter and synopsis, but I have some time as I can’t mail it until I get home anyways, so I’ll give myself two weeks to get that done. After that, it will be off to the publisher and I should expect a generic rejection letter within 4-8 months. Way to be optimistic, I know!

Seriously though, I’m submitting to a place that gets like two trillion submissions a year. I don’t really expect anything to come of it, I just have to try. After that I might find another publisher that accepts submissions without agents and is in my genre, but most likely I’m going to self-publish. Just being realistic here. I know what I write is good, but sending it to the wrong agent within the company on an off day, or realizing that my novel has too slow of a start for them to consider it, or if they just accepted ten manuscripts in a row and they don’t have time for my shit; all of that could lead to a rejection letter. I 100% believe that getting into the market is all about luck.

You know that thing about how Rowling was rejected X amount of times but she still made it (or conversely, that Twilight is a piece of shit and it made it)? If you look at Rowling’s first two books (possibly the third one too, I don’t remember) the writing isn’t that good. The plot is fabulous, the setting is fabulous, all those writing elements are fabulous, but the books just don’t read like the later ones do. She improved herself for the last books, but the first books were probably rejected for a reason. Publishers took a look at the writing, thought the plot was okay, but ultimately didn’t think the writer was that good. Their loss, clearly. But seriously…. how the hell was Twilight published?

This is a bit of a tangential rant now. I haven’t even mentioned that it’s Kiss of the Fey I plan to publish. But yes, in summary, I plan to submit to 1-3 publishers and then if that doesn’t work out I shall self-publish.