Warning: the following entry contains a brief discussion of rape, in terms of it as a plot device.
First off: I have to apologize for not stopping by anyone's blog for the past two weeks. >_< I've been ridiculously busy with preparing to start a book and actually starting said book, along with mandatory overtime from work (which started in the first week of February and only ended last week) which kind of sucked the life out of me because it meant many weeks of taking my work computer home on weekends and thus feeling like I only got one-day weekends for all that time.
In other words, I've been kind of out of it and trying to get too much done, and I've neglected to stop by and see how others are going. Especially now, in April, when a lot of people are posting every day. I apologize for that, and I'll do better.
Anyway. I started writing a book this past Saturday (current word count: 11077), and somehow, that got me thinking: we keep hearing the advice to write what we want to write. But what about what we don't want to write? I think that's worthy of a little discussion.
As I said a few entries ago, I don't want to write dark, hopeless horror. I need endings that aren't grim and dour, and I need whatever the characters are dealing with to be something they can actually fight against. I've seen this sort of darkness done well, but it's not for me.
While we're talking genres, I no longer want to write sword-and-horse fantasy. Classic high fantasy, Tolkienesque stuff, you get the idea. I've noticed over the past few books and plots that my ideas are getting stranger and stranger, and I'm much more likely to play with what having magic and active gods and active dragons and cool stuff like that would actually mean in a world than to say "Go get me precisely one dwarf and one elf, we have a quest to undertake." I'm good with this.
I don't want to write standard boy-meets-girl relationships. They're everywhere, and quite frankly, they bore the hell out of me. :P Okay, I'm exaggerating a little. I don't mind them when they're done well, and I'm used to them popping up in most stories in any given media. And I'm not saying I'd never write one; if I write two people who are clearly interested in each other, I'll go with it. But it just feels like no matter who the cast members are, people expect the lead guy and the lead girl to get together, to the point that it's a subversion when they don't.
I also definitely don't want to write "good girl meets bad boy" relationships. Ye gods, that shows up in so many books I see these days, and it always sounds the same. Is there really that much of an audience for "I know I shouldn't want him but I do anyway"?
On a darker note, I will not write rape. I've read various discussions of rape in fiction, and I'm convinced it's never necessary as a plot device. No matter what a rape is supposed to accomplish in a story, there's always another way to accomplish it. I did once write a scene of attempted rape, and if I went back to that story, I would find another way to make that plot point (which ended in the attempter's death) happen.
Lastly (and much more cheerful), I don't want to write anything that's completely humorless. Because that would be the most dull, boring thing I could ever write. Seriously. Can you imagine an entire book without a single joke in it? Without anyone in it having any reason to laugh? How much of a downer would that be?
So, now I'd like to hear from the rest of y'all. What don't you want to write, or what do you refuse to write? And has any of that sprung from you wanting to write it and learning it wasn't for you?