Fridge: How NOT to Write a Novel
- The book describes a story tainted by a Featureless Plane of Disembodied Dialogue as being like two brains communicating telepathically in a lightless room in vats of nutrient-rich fluid, then jokes that if that really is the setting of the story, carry on... but wouldn't you still need to know which brain was talking in a story like that?
- Depending on how the scene is done the reader might be able to follow by seeing which line comes first and picking up details of the speakers by the quirks of their dialogue. This would require that the writer of such a book be sufficiently talented that the quirks of the characters' respective dialogues would become immediately recognizable to the reader over time, and if they were that talented, they probably wouldn't need to read a book like How Not to Write a Novel in the first place.
- The book features a lot of examples of bad writing. While these examples are often useful, there's sure to be some examples that make you think "Well, yeah; of course I'm not going to do that. It's obviously not a good way to write a book." Only after a while will you realize that the authors of the book have worked as editors, and have seen a lot of fiction, and since they want to make their book as useful as possible they must make sure to include the most common mistakes people make. Meaning that the example of bad writing you just discarded as an obvious bad idea has been somebody's idea of good writing, and not just once, but so many times that it was necessary to include it in this book. Anyone who reads fan fiction, on the other hand, will already know this. And some of the authors even don't consider it important to clear their works from grammatic errors and such... Seriously, though, the sad thing is, it's not limited to fanfiction. One cannot imagine the amount of bad writing that finds its way into even regular books (past the editors), not to mention Vanity Publishing and such...