Feb 11 2009

A Glimpse into the Editor’s Office: Editing Twilight

Published by at 8:29 pm under Book Review,Twilight,Writer's Reviews

This is how I would have edited the first two pages of Twilight.  In particular, I found that the main character has a bland personality and needs better motivations.


If I had been the publisher’s assistant considering this work, I would probably have stopped reading at this point.

  1. Character motivation is missing.  For example, if she loves Arizona and her father makes her uncomfortable, why does she decide to go to Forks?
  2. I’m not feeling the main character’s voice.  She sounds sort of pretentious (e.g. “despite the scarcity of my funds”) and not terribly interesting.
  3. The sentences are unnecessarily convoluted.  (Bella really likes em-dashes!)  That particularly hampered the pacing during the death scene flash-forward.
  4. I don’t think the author is on my page.  The narrator says that she’s terrified, but she actually comes across as implausibly calm.*  She denies that she’s verbose, but even her denial is verbose!  If you want readers to reach those conclusions, have your characters lead the way with their actions and words.  Telling us she has a particular trait when she’s demonstrating that she doesn’t is probably not as effective as it could be (unless you consciously want to make the character look unaware of herself).


*Across the board, the author could have done more “showing” rather than “telling.”  For example, I would have tried to show how terrified the narrator was by using syntax, her word-choice, body-language and actions. Terror is a strong emotion that should be more visible than it was. Although she’s purportedly terrified, she actually comes off as implausibly calm for someone facing death at an early age. It didn’t feel believable to me.



If you enjoyed this review of Twilight, please also see my list of editing errors in the Twilight series.

294 responses so far

294 Responses to “A Glimpse into the Editor’s Office: Editing Twilight”

  1. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 12 Feb 2009 at 12:27 am

    Jeez, those are pretty simple mistakes. I make heaps of them, but at least I have the sense to go through and edit out the ones that I notice. A good editor would have weeded out most of those mistakes.

  2. Ragged Boyon 12 Feb 2009 at 5:12 am

    My friend just got super offended after reading that you revised it. Twilight fans are die-hard. I plead apathy on the whole thing when they’re around.

  3. Ragged Boyon 12 Feb 2009 at 5:32 am

    That piece was a little funky though. Thank god I don’t try so hard to be mysterious.

  4. B. Macon 12 Feb 2009 at 7:23 am

    The first page made a lot of serious mistakes, but these are the three that would have led me to reject the manuscript.

    1. Character motivation is completely missing.
    2. The character voice, unless she’s meant to sound like a parody of an English major…
    3. The sentences are really convoluted. (She really likes hyphens!) That particularly hampered the pacing during the death scene flash-forward.

    Also, it’s hard to tell from this short passage, but this author hasn’t demonstrated the ability to “show” rather than “tell.” For example, the narrator tells us she’s terrified, but nothing actually shows that. If I were rewriting that passage, I’d try to convey that with syntax, her word-choice, body-language, actions and the like. Terror is a strong emotion that should be more visible than it is here. Although she’s purportedly terrified, she actually comes off as implausibly calm for someone facing death at an early age. It doesn’t feel believable.

  5. Lunajamniaon 12 Feb 2009 at 8:20 am


    I also think Twilight could have been written much better (or not written at all).

  6. Davidon 12 Feb 2009 at 1:28 pm

    I’ve never actually seen or read it.

  7. B. Macon 12 Feb 2009 at 1:58 pm

    Judging from the three pages I’ve read, I’d recommend staying far away from it.

  8. Davidon 12 Feb 2009 at 2:21 pm

    Lol, ok. Will do.

  9. Justinon 12 Feb 2009 at 3:18 pm

    i think you are all just jealous of the popularity she is getting. i could explain the reason why she made every single ‘mistake’ she did but that would be wasted on yous.

  10. B. Macon 12 Feb 2009 at 3:31 pm

    Justin, I’m not jealous of successful authors or their works. Ahem… I’ve said quite a lot of nice things about Harry Potter, His Majesty’s Dragon and Ender’s Game, for example. I’ve even begrudgingly praised Eragon for being easy to follow.

    Feel free to defend Meyer’s authorial choices, if you’d like, but could you cut the pretentiousness? Thanks.

  11. Lunajamniaon 12 Feb 2009 at 4:20 pm

    B.Mac/whoever edited my earlier comment–thanks. 🙂

    Anyway, in (slightly) keeping with the topic–I, too, constantly struggle with ‘relevant’ dialogue in my story and constantly describe something or give away information that really has no relevance to the plot at all/no relevance to what is happening.

    Sometimes I do it because I feel it makes it more real; that the characters are talking about something pertinent to their lives even if it’s all out of the blue because that is what we do sometimes. But then again, now that you point it out, it does make it rather confusing for people. I haven’t read the books in a while and the first paragraph of the first page was … BAM. IRRELEVANT. At least, the last sentence of the paragraph. I could see it so clearly, (and how I do it in my own writing) first she’s talking about the weather and then suddenly, oh, by the way, I’m wearing my favorite shirt and my carry-on is a parka. ??? What does that have to do with anything at this particular point?

    I also struggle with ‘showing’ the character’s emotions instead of telling, as you pointed out that Meyer did. And also I struggle as Meyer seems to, with the narrator/Bella saying that she was frightened and then being quite calm. I do that often as well.

  12. Ragged Boyon 12 Feb 2009 at 4:29 pm

    Jealousy is a crappy motive for disliking someone. If I don’t like you or what you do, I would find a much better reason than jealousy to do so. The crypticness of that page was annoying, there are much better ways to have mystery. Also a little body language wouldn’t hurt.

  13. B. Macon 12 Feb 2009 at 4:57 pm

    I would have liked more body language and some scenery. For example, the preface is missing any sort of place-setting. Are we in… a bedroom? A hospital? A church? A UFO? This scene could be happening anywhere. Nor does the character place us in the story by doing things we can visualize. Besides looking in the hunter’s eyes and looking at his smile, she doesn’t do anything except narrate to us.

    When the story uses scenery, it tends to be reasonably effective. For example, Phoenix is perfectly sunny and clear, and that implies that it’s a happy place for her. That’s not a particularly fresh use of scenery, but it’s serviceable.

  14. Dforceon 12 Feb 2009 at 5:30 pm

    Hmm… Oh jeez! The RED pen!! … the school memories… lol

    While I understand, after reading the frightening red pen sidenotes, why those would be considered mistakes, I gotta say… they didn’t strike me as horrendous. Now, I’ve never read the book, but from what I read just now it was sorta OK. It didn’t put me off much, or at all actually.

    The passage made pretty easy reading for me; not very different from any other novel I remember reading. Then again, I wasn’t looking for anything to correct nor am I an editor with a refined eye of any sort.

    If her book seems to be popular with the flaws it has, would it be any better (or worse) if the changes were applied? Couldn’t some mistakes be put on there consciouly just to put them there, so as to make a point of some sort? Perhaps author style (hyphens, lol) or what-have-you (XD).

    B.Mac, you questioned her tone on the flash-forward scene-thingy… my thinking is: If the character is apparently talking from the future to the reader of what will happen to her, in a sort of introspective way (or is it extrospective; I’m not sure about the word to use, I am sure about what is going on in the passage), isn’t it plausible for her to explain things in a calm and collected manner? Although a stylized voice for the character would be fine, isn’t it OK to write like so? The book did sell… And HER publisher let her do it… *pouts*

    And about the use of “cheesy” and outlandish word-choice: If not in a book you’re writing, then were are you able to be sesquipedalian?? XD This is a serious question, though.

    Just some of my thoughts…

  15. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 13 Feb 2009 at 12:05 am

    Justin, legitimate reasons have been given as to the edits made. No one here is jealous of Ms. Meyer’s work. She did pretty well in getting her Twilight series published, as it is difficult to get editors to even finish the first page.

    I often make mistakes, but I do my best to edit them out. Ms. Meyer would have been much better off, even attracted more fans, if she had edited it a little more.

  16. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 17 Feb 2009 at 9:50 pm

    Then again, maybe it wasn’t long enough and her editor told her to pad it out. But then couldn’t she have written more scenery and less useless junk?

    If I were told to pad mine out, I’d put some scenes I cut out back into it and describe more. For example, if Isaac were to give a class speech, I might put that “the corners of my cards dug into the palms of my hands and I was shaking. Hoping no one could see my nervousness, I began to speak”. That says a lot more than random bits of information that don’t fit into the rest of the story.

  17. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 23 Feb 2009 at 5:07 am

    I’m not sure if Christine Feehan’s fans are worse. Read some of these horror stories from Twilight haters.


    Stalked, threatened, beaten with chairs, attacked with bats, acid in the face… Holy hell, these fangirls are totally insane. Even I don’t go that nuts over stuff.

  18. Holliequon 23 Feb 2009 at 10:01 am

    Holy crap.

    I just read that somebody threw a beaker of acid in a girl’s face because she didn’t like Twilight.

    . . . HOLY CRAP. Humanity never ceases to amaze me.

  19. Stefan the Invisible Manon 23 Feb 2009 at 10:53 am

    I think this first page is a pretty good indicator of the quality of the rest of the book. I’m interested to find out what everyone else thought of it? The plot, the writing, everything. Any thoughts?

  20. Holliequon 23 Feb 2009 at 11:25 am

    I’ve only read the first book. It was pretty awful overall. Her characters have no personality whatsoever and at times Bella made me wince because she was being so pathetic. Edward was creepy and made all her decisions for her. (“I don’t want to go to prom!” “Bella, I’m taking you to prom.” “Oh, okay.” And that’s just one example).

    There was no plot to speak of, but what was there was decent. Trying to figure out Edward? Could have taken way less pages, but that wasn’t too awful. The vampire-hunting at the end? That had its problems, but it wasn’t terrible either. My only real problem was the pages between those two things, which were just soppy filler that made me wince. God knows how I managed through that, because I cannot stand soppy.

    The writing was . . . average at best. Some parts of it were completely irrelevant (see: “My carry on was a parka.”). It told too much and showed too little. There was little reference to scenery.

    I think that Twilight could have been a good book . . . with some serious editing. The premise of a human falling in love with a vampire could have been done SO much better (and probably has). There should have been more problems than “we can’t live anywhere sunny, because I sparkle”.

  21. B. Macon 23 Feb 2009 at 11:26 am

    Character motivation (and character development more generally) is probably the most glaring defect. Nothing about the plot sounds particularly enticing. Usually, when an author is that coy about what’s going on, it suggests that the author is not confident about the quality of the plot.

  22. Ragged Boyon 23 Feb 2009 at 1:38 pm

    Haha. Twi-hards, I like that expression.

  23. B. Macon 23 Feb 2009 at 6:48 pm

    I think some of those stories would be remarkably scary if true, but I’m holding out hope they’re apocryphal. For example, if someone really threw a beaker of acid at someone’s face over Twilight, there’d probably be at least a story in the local paper. At the very least, a story in the school paper. I wasn’t able to find any sort of professional reporting on this, so I’m a bit skeptical. Generally, papers do a pretty good job of reporting violent crimes, particularly when there’s a really unusual motive.

    In my experiences, I have noticed that the fans of poor novels tend to be the most defensive. Another situation that can also make fans defensive is when a book’s readers tend to be demographically very similar. That can make the criticism feel more personal. For example, from what I can tell, almost all of Twilight’s fans are female and most are between ages 10-20. [UPDATE]* That can make something like “Twilight is really stupid” sound like “young women read really stupid stuff.”

    [UPDATE: My initial assessment was probably off the mark on age. In retrospect, I’d guess that the median age of a Twilight reader is probably closer to 25 or 30].

  24. Lunajamniaon 08 Mar 2009 at 4:25 pm

    Yes, but there are also the ‘Twi-moms’ (they call themselves that) who are 25/30 and over and cannot believe people don’t like Twilight and in many cases act exactly like some of the over obsessed teen/preteen girls.

    I’m a member of that site and though I do doubt many of the stories, many are actually possible because, well, of course nobody would believe people would get that crazy over a book (but take the guy who shot and I think killed another guy ’cause that dude took his parking spot). And the way that some Twilight-lovers have ‘talked’ to me just over the internet makes it quite possible (or not such a stretch) for them to have thrown the book at someone and much worse. They have threatened people, or at least said that I have no life and ‘sworn’ at me quite vehemently and basically said that we (Twilight haters) should all go crawl in a hole and die.

    I guess this means that I, too, take it personal. But unlike the Twilight lovers, it’s because they say I am a pathetic loser; and that I shall never get published and that I should pretty much kiss Meyer’s feet and never, ever, EVER criticize/doubt her work. Because apparently, she is a genius, a goddess, and other vampires/vampire books are old and boring and stupid–though published authors who write better than her have been criticized/critiqued and she should just take it because not everyone is going to like her work.

    *deep breath*

    I shall leave you with these loverly quotes:


    “A AWESOME IDEA (infiltrating our Twilight Haters group on goodreads-and I admit, our group is a little crazy because there are younger girls there too)!!!!!!! HOW COULD ANYONE HATE TWILIGHT???????? i LOVE THEM BOOKS!! THEY WERE SO WELL WRITTEN TOO. IF THEY HAVE A PROBLEM WITH IT THATS THERE OWN FAULT THEY DON’T HAVE AMAGINATION.”

    *Sigh* I know they’re probably 11 or something, but it really makes me sad …

  25. Lunajamniaon 08 Mar 2009 at 4:30 pm

    Seriously … it’s turning into a stinking cult. All hail Twilight and kill everyone who does not kiss it and dares question Meyer. All you have to do is type in ‘Edward Cullen’ and you’ll get plenty of scary results.


    Anyway … I do give Meyer credit that she got so many kids/preteens/teens/adults reading again, and that her writing tends to make ‘the world fall away’ so that it’s like you’re living the story when you’re reading it instead of just reading. The beef I have with that is that so many of the girls (and guys) who read it seem to be stuck on the Twilight books; and keep re-reading them and never reading anything else and believing they are the standard for literature (of course sadly, perhaps they are today’s standards?).

  26. Dforceon 08 Mar 2009 at 5:01 pm

    lol. Hmm… I wonder if it would be possible (as in legally OK) to write a comic pilot over a “fictional” someone’s otaku-craze over… a book(?)… He he.

    I’m looking for a quick reason to give to my psycho for setting off bombs at a school (nothing too serious, just something pseudo-comical and plausible).

  27. Holliequon 08 Mar 2009 at 5:38 pm

    Dforce, what kid HASN’T dreamed of blowing up the school or something similar? 😉

    I think the Twilight “Saga” should have stopped at . . . well, Twilight. Once I’d finished reading that book, I thought ‘well it’s absorbing, but not really a good read’. I didn’t think much else of it, and it seemed a little stupid to me that people were loving/hating on it so much.

    The large beef I have with the Twilight series isn’t flat characters or prose or the constant drooling over Edward (those things are annoying/bad, but at the same time I can see why people enjoy them). I’ve read some summaries and all the anti-feminist stuff and well, frankly it’s scary that so many teens are worshipping Meyer when the books actually promote things like teen suicide and anti-feminism (or at least portray them and then ignore them).

    Now, that was admittedly from a Twilight-haters site, so I’ve resolved to borrow the books and read them myself when I have the time. But the books certainly sound like they’re full of glorified unhealthy ideas.

  28. Lunajamniaon 08 Mar 2009 at 6:03 pm

    @Holli–they are.

    I admit, when I first read them (before they began becoming a craze) they were okay, at the most. I thought that her spin on vampires was definitely different, but I was alright with that. I was one of those who was like ‘*sigh* Edward sounds like the perfect guy’ (I wasn’t obsessed, thank goodness ^_^) and then when surfing the web I randomly found a few Twilight Hater site type things, and read some of the bad things in Twilight or whatever. I re-read the books, and

    “What the heck? He’s watching Bella sleep … he won’t let her be with her friends … he sparkles, (I mean yeah it doesn’t seem that big a deal until you realize that Meyer basically ruined the vampire image, now soo many girls think a vampire sparkles and is the perfect bf) he has NO flaws whatsoever except that he’s overprotectively creepy. Bella is way too clumsy, she never actually does anything for anyone really, pretty much always gets her way … ”

    There was just so much I didn’t see. And then everyone started getting obsessed and dissing everyone who didn’t like the books and it completely turned me off to all of it. If someone wishes another a miscarriage over a freaking book (though the lady did eventually apologize) or deletes everything off someone’s computer because they didn’t like the books I just … a fictional book is not that important.

  29. Dforceon 08 Mar 2009 at 6:26 pm

    Die-hard fans can be dangerous… I, myself, almost cried when I finally saw the trailer for Dragonball Evolution. (The characters and plot were horridly wrecked just to make a CG filled hollywood extravaganza and a quick buck on the coattails of what I believe to be a great saga; albeit some SN members may disagree with me on DBZ, though that is fine; to each his own).

    I can say I don’t wish murder on all responsible for this… mess… but I do want some form of financial or otherwise karmic-crippling to befall on them. It’s just not right that they can get away with it… But acid to the face may be a bit too far.

  30. Holliequon 08 Mar 2009 at 6:46 pm

    Ah, I heard about the terrible DBZ film from some friends I know. My condolences.

    I’ve been lucky so far. The books I love that have been made into movies have been by and large pretty good, although the Harry Potter ones seem to get worse with every telling. That’s understandable, though, since there’s so much in the books. Also, the film of Inkheart was excellent.

  31. B. Macon 08 Mar 2009 at 10:48 pm

    I find DBZ a bit too action-centric, and its characters are thin even compared to other action-based cartoon shows (like TMNT or Justice League). I’ve seen a few episodes and they only barely want to make me beat my head in with a tire iron. That’s more than I can say for, say, Ren & Stimpy or most episodes of Family Guy. Some of DBZ’s plot elements annoy me. For example, characters are brought back from the dead far too often and drawing out a fight 3+ episodes is just unacceptable. But nothing I’ve seen so far makes me wonder “what the hell were they thinking!?

    Also, I have great respect for DBZ as a business endeavor. For better or worse, it appears to have opened up some American consumers to (some kinds of) anime. Introducing consumers to a new kind of product is never easy.

  32. Stefan the Exploding Manon 09 Mar 2009 at 5:00 am

    Vampires in my opinion should remain in the horror genre. My biggest problem with Twilight is that Stephenie Meyer has helped to remove the fear of the vampire. And what are vampires if nobody’s afraid of them?

    B. Mac, I understand that most readers have a love him or hate him attitude with Garth Ennis, but I’m a pretty big fan of his work on Punisher and his take on the character is the best I’ve read. I’d like to hear what you don’t like about his comic book work.

  33. B. Macon 09 Mar 2009 at 5:20 am

    I agree with you on vampires and the horror genre. At the point when vampires become anything other than horrifying stalkers of the night, I think they lose their reason for being. Also, sparkling vampires? Stephanie Meyer, I want to slap you with a mackerel.

    As for Garth Ennis, I detest him mainly because he uses rape for shock value. I’m struggling to remember which series this happened in, but in the first issue there’s a scene where a mother and father are both raped (on-camera) as their kid is ripped in half. Charming. [UPDATE: Crossed #1]

    I am by no means a scholar of Ennis, but those more knowledgeable with his work could probably come up with similarly repulsive examples.

    Also, like many other successful writers, he’s underedited. For example, in Marvel Knights there’s a scene where the Punisher punches a polar bear in the face. Hmm. I think that’s sort of a jarring change of pace from the mood of the series.

  34. Stefan the Exploding Manon 09 Mar 2009 at 7:17 am

    I think the series you’re referring to could be Preacher. I haven’t read it, but I’ve heard how it has extremely graphic depictions of sex and violence and it’s probably his most famous work.

    He has a more recent series, The Boys, which reads like an attack on all superhero comics, or at least a brutal satire. There’s a character, Tek Knight, who basically has sex with everything, including a dog, a cat, a robot and his butler. Superheroes have bizzarre sex parties. A young female character is told she has to give three male superheroes oral sex before she can join a premiere superhero team.

    Compared to his other work, I think Garth Ennis’ Punisher is pretty tame. It has a more comedic tone, and isn’t just about senseless violence. Garth Ennis has definately shown worse things in a comic book than a polar bear being punched in the face. He’s definately a writer who you love or hate. I think his appeal comes from his superhero stories having different feels to anyone else’s.

    But that’s an interesting point about him being underedited. I wonder how it would feel to be an editor attached to a superstar writer.

  35. B. Macon 11 Mar 2009 at 6:01 am

    Hmm. I don’t think it was Preacher. If I think about it for a few days, I’ll probably be able to come up with it. [UDPATE: The rape scene in question happened in Crossed #1.]

    The polar bear punching is pretty tame, violence-wise. Even Superhero Nation has more violent scenes, such as Jacob shooting a stupid henchman. I object to the polar bear punching because it’s so much wackier than pretty much anything else in the story. It would have fit in better in a more farcical series.

    I’ve never edited any best-sellers, but I imagine that it’s probably depressing work. The editor has two overriding imperatives: get the story out on time, and do everything possible to keep the author cheerful. Consequently, bestselling authors tend to be under-edited. The stories won’t be very coherent, the prose is usually too wordy, etc.

    Usually, less-experienced and poor-selling authors get less leeway to do things like publish a book that’s 1000 pages long. An editor would beat the shit out of it… lopping out characters, subplots, etc. But JK Rowling and Tom Clancy don’t get that sort of treatment. Consequently, their works tend to be padded with unnecessary scenes.

    Also, best-selling authors get a lot of leeway (maybe too much) to go off on unusual tangents or explore strange worlds.

  36. B. Macon 11 Mar 2009 at 7:17 pm

    Got it. It’s Crossed #1.

  37. Stefan the Exploding Manon 12 Mar 2009 at 7:40 am

    I’ve never heard of it before, but I did a bit of research on wikipedia, and apparently Avatar Press, who published Crossed, offered a few high profile writers like Ennis opportunities to write for the company, with no content restrictions. Which explains the whole rape thing, I guess.

  38. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 15 Mar 2009 at 2:56 am

    It has been said before, and I will repeat it:


    If I had Edward for a boyfriend, I’d dump him and go to the courthouse for a restraining order. Then I’d buy a gun or a knife and sleep with it under my pillow. I’d buy CCTV for my house, bolt all the doors and windows at night (and during the day) and get a burglar alarm. And a German Shepherd, a Rottweiler or a Blue Heeler. Perhaps all three. I’d change my name and move away if I caught him watching me sleep, and kick his sparkly vampire butt if he even tried to touch me. If all that didn’t stop him, I’d put a gun turret outside my house and a rocket launcher on the roof. If that wouldn’t stop him, I’d expose him as a vampire at school, lure him into a trap and rip him to shreds before burning him.

    Yep, vampires better watch out, because they won’t last long around me. XD

  39. Tomon 15 Mar 2009 at 4:50 am

    I think the gun turret might be taking it a step too far. But other than that, go for it!

  40. Stefan the Exploding Manon 15 Mar 2009 at 4:56 am

    Tom, I refer you to a link posted by RW in an earlier comment.

    If Edward had an army of Twilight fangirls behind him, you’d need more than one gun turret.

  41. Tomon 15 Mar 2009 at 5:05 am

    Oh, if there was an army of fangirls then by all means, have a gun turret. But if it’s just Edward then it’s too much. Still, I suppose better safe than sorry. 😀

  42. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 15 Mar 2009 at 8:09 pm

    I read somewhere that SMeyer finished Twilight in 3 months. It definitely shows.

    I read a teeny bit in the school library the other week, and I just could not go on. All the other girls have Twilight tucked under their arms and discussing how “OMG HAWT” Edward is.

    Our library recently got five copies of each book, and I couldn’t concentrate on reading something that’s actually good (Artemis Fowl: The Time Paradox) because they were squealing so loud. Dogs for miles around must’ve been howling.

  43. B. Macon 16 Mar 2009 at 2:11 am

    Well, on the plus side, I think it’s good that they’re getting into libraries. Over my four years of high school, I only checked out 3 or 4 books from my HS library because I found it kind of seedy. The next town over has an excellent public library, but that’s 4 miles away and they only let people from out-of-district check out 2 books at a time. Because of the weird way my town is shaped, my library is actually farther away than that one.

    I’ve heard of a few authors doing drafts in three months, but yeah… I’d allot at least 1-2 years for writing, then another 2 years to get it published and rewritten and finally into bookstores. Even if your manuscript is totally awesome and every publisher accepts it, the submission process will still take months. It’s worse in academic publishing, by the way. One of my brothers has submitted to a few journals that have told him to wait two years to hear back from them.

  44. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 16 Mar 2009 at 3:33 am

    Yeah, it is good that our school library is getting more books with a wider range of topics. However, since there are now twenty Twilight books in our library, the psycho fangirls can get their hands on one any time of the school day. Why won’t the squealing STOP?! Haha.

    Two years? That’s freaking ages! I could probably wait six months to hear back from a publisher, but not two years.

  45. B. Macon 16 Mar 2009 at 5:05 am

    Even six months is so long that it makes it virtually impossible for the average writer to think about going full-time. On the other hand, if it were two years, I think the average writer would give up altogether.

    Fortunately, the submission process gets faster as an author establishes that he can sell well enough to clear his advances. (That’s usually about one paperback copy for each US dollar of the advance, so that’s usually somewhere between 4000-6000 copies for a first-time fiction novel).

    Publishers will feel especially comfortable if you pitch a book similar to one that sold well… for example, the new book might have the same audience, the same genre, the same kind of protagonist and it might even be part of the same series.

    So that’s one of the things to look forward to as a young writer, particularly if you can deliver sales. (One of the recurring trends in any field is that bosses are more deferential to top producers, and for novelists that pretty much only means how many copies you sell).

  46. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 20 Mar 2009 at 6:57 pm

    I like this spoof of the Twilight trailer. I’d have loved the movie if it was like this:

  47. Ragged Boyon 20 Mar 2009 at 7:13 pm

    That was hilarious!

    Bella: “So what, he wants to kill me?!”

    Edward: “No, he wants my candy bar!”

  48. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 20 Mar 2009 at 7:18 pm

    Twilight would have been so much better if it was like that. They should do a full length parody; I would gladly accept it as canonical. Haha.

  49. C. S. Marloweon 02 Apr 2009 at 2:37 pm

    Just one note- Bella isn’t fourteen in Twilight, she’s seventeen. Asides from that, I can agree with all of the points- particularly the whole thing about the opening prologue and how it dances around the truth rather than actually telling us what’s going on. Used to be fond of Twilight- a couple of years ago. Thankfully, I was never a Twi-hard though… (is immediately bayoneted by psychopathic twelve-year-olds who think Edward loves them.)

  50. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 03 Apr 2009 at 4:34 pm

    Anti-Twilight people have to tread carefully at my school. Around every corner there is a girl (or a rare boy) holding a copy of one of the books. If they were all to gang up, they could slaughter the small Anti community.

  51. Beccaon 06 Apr 2009 at 4:39 pm

    The ReTARDISed Whovian is right. My high school is no longer a safe place for Anti-Twilighters. It’s a tragedy waiting to happen, I’m sure.

  52. Mr. Briton 06 Apr 2009 at 6:06 pm

    They’re not just 12. I know 16/17 year olds with an unhealthy Edward obsession 😛

  53. Ragged Boyon 06 Apr 2009 at 6:42 pm

    My school is a freakshow. I think I know more boy Twi-hards than girls. They usually aren’t as aggressive and die-hard as the girls, but they are quick to snap and defend the book.

  54. Lunajamniaon 06 Apr 2009 at 8:03 pm

    Have you heard of ‘TwiMoms’? (And they DO proudly call themselves that) They are 25 and upwards, and oh the horror of their comments and obsessions about ‘Edward.’

  55. B. Macon 06 Apr 2009 at 9:34 pm

    Hmm, that’s unexpected, RB. What do you think the appeal for Twilight is to a guy? Hmm.

  56. Tomon 07 Apr 2009 at 4:25 am

    Good question. Boys reading Twilight? I don’t get it.

    In my school it’s slowly taking over. Ever since the film came out I’ve seen more and more people with copies in their hands, and not just one clique either, the in-crowd reads it, the geek girls read it and the etc. group reads it.

    Thankfully all girls though.

  57. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 07 Apr 2009 at 4:31 am

    I don’t see much appeal in it for a girl.

  58. Lunajamniaon 07 Apr 2009 at 5:23 am

    You don’t? Edward is their ‘perfect guy’ and they’d love it if all men were like him.

    (I’d hide in a bombshelter for 10 years until the whole thing blows over and reality hits them)

  59. B. Macon 07 Apr 2009 at 6:46 am

    I don’t know what to do. When I’m dating, I want to be my honey’s Edward Cullen. I’m ragingly attractive, but I don’t have the stalking creepiness yet. What would you recommend?

    Speaking of creepy stalkers, I’d recommend anyone that finds that sort of thing attractive to listen to Phantom by T-Pain. (It’s fairly profane).

  60. Tomon 07 Apr 2009 at 6:56 am

    Drug her and force her to go to Prom. Then watch her all night when she sleeps.

    Edward Cullen did it and girls found it romantic apparently.

    Or, so I’ve heard. I wouldn’t touch those books with a 10 foot pole.

  61. B. Macon 07 Apr 2009 at 7:04 am

    My impression is that the appeal to 12-year-old girls is that there’s hot guys and girls living out their childhood fantasies (hot guys fighting over them). Additionally, there isn’t much adult content. As a rule, if you want to appeal to 12 year-old girls, I’d recommend exploiting cuteness and PG sex appeal without, umm, actually doing anything overtly sexual. For example, see the Jonas Brothers and every other boy band, etc.

    According to Urban Dictionary, “A hot girl who follows you around and shows up at your door is a friend. An ugly girl who follows you around and shows up at your door is a stalker. A hot guy who gives you flowers is a romantic. An ugly guy who gives you flowers is a stalker.”

    Incidentally, if you check out the TV Tropes entry “Stalking is Love,” Cullen is the lead picture.

  62. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 08 Apr 2009 at 10:20 pm

    I don’t even think Edward is attractive. All the makeup RPattz wears in the movie just seems so unnatural. I know that’s the point, but it’s not a good look for him at all. His role as Cedric Diggory did him a lot more justice than Edward did.

    Oh yes, I have heard of TwiMoms/TwiMums. They scare me.

    “Edward is their ‘perfect guy’ and they’d love it if all men were like him”. Stock up on food. I’m coming to live in that bomb shelter. Haha.

  63. Benon 10 Apr 2009 at 5:14 am

    I think the point Meyer was making with the wardrobe comments (I was wearing a sleeveless whatever… and my carry on was a parka) was to tell the reader Bella was leaving a hot place (sleeveless shirt) and going to a cold, wet place (parka).

    I think it’s a bit amateur, but I think that’s her point.

    I read the book because a lot of people around me were too, but I found it really really strung out and obsessed with telling the reader just how incredibly gorgeous Edward Cullen was… like on every second page.

    On the other hand I have to say that, while nothing much ever actually happened, the clumsiness of Bella was actually a little funny, and there was some good dialogue. On the whole, though, Bella was excruciatingly annoying and Edward was oppressive and overbearing.

    The fight scene at the end should have been good but Bella passes out and the majority of the action is done ‘behind the scenes’. It’s almost as bad as saying the character wakes up and the whole thing was a dream.

    Anyway, I’m not a big fan but I don’t hate it either. Meyer tapped in to the market really well and considering she got published multiple times and has a string of films in the pipeline, she’s obviously done something right.

  64. Tomon 10 Apr 2009 at 6:01 am

    That’s a fair point. They may not have been any good, but people like them, so, who cares?

  65. Anonymous-Manon 12 Apr 2009 at 10:54 am

    The first book is decent/good, but they get progressively worse. In the fourth book, Meyer has two massive armies of vampires and werewolves [and what was the point of them just being shape shifters and not “real” werewolves?] but they just argue and leave without a massive fight. Wtf? Anti-climactic much?

    Also, in the fourth and thankfully last book, Bella and Ed have sex. However, hasn’t it been established by that point that his blood does not flow? So doesn’t that mean that he should not be able to get an erection, i.e. not have sex?

  66. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 12 Apr 2009 at 5:46 pm

    Meyer even disobeys the rules of her own universe. Sigh.

  67. Davidon 14 Apr 2009 at 8:57 am

    A friend of mine is doing a Twilight fanfic. I told her to post it here to give you guys a look. Should she?

  68. B. Macon 14 Apr 2009 at 10:29 am

    No fan-fiction here. However, if your friend is interested in doing her own original vampire story, that’d be cool.

  69. RikuTomoshibion 14 Apr 2009 at 6:21 pm

    What gets me is that Twilight defeats the entire purpose of vampires. By definition, vampires are heartless, deceased beings that feel no emotion. Ergo, they can’t love! Also, who can possibly take a sparkling vampire seriously? Anything that looks like a walking disco ball is more funny than scary. Twilight also spends more time talking about the relationship than the actual point…that she wants to ‘have fun’ with a frickin’ nightwalker! Although seriously, I have met people that have custom t-shirts made that say they’re married to Edward. People like that make me want to go home and shove a knife down my throat.

  70. Holliequon 14 Apr 2009 at 6:28 pm

    I don’t have much problem with Twilight’s vampires. The fact that they sparkle is pretty ludicrous and it’d be nice if there was a downside, but I’m not sure why people take such offence at Meyer changing the definition of “vampire”. Haven’t vampires changed a hell of a lot from Dracula? And didn’t Dracula change a lot from folklore (not to mention how many variations there were of vampire folklore)? If she copied (let’s say) Blade‘s vampires, people would be complaining about how unoriginal she was being.

    I find the fact that people want to marry someone like Edward very worrying. Not that that has much to do with vampires, but still.

  71. B. Macon 14 Apr 2009 at 6:46 pm

    Conventions change all the time, and sometimes the fans approve. I’m not that familiar with vampires, so I’ll make a comparison with superheroes. New superheroes look a lot different than superheroes from the Golden Age. Capes and tights are dying, and fans approve. I’ve never heard anyone say “damn, I wish superheroes wore more Spandex!”

    However, I have heard a few people ridicule Meyer’s sparkling vampires. The issue isn’t that that she’s changing the conventions of the genre, but rather that the change is ridiculous. Vampires are supposed to be sexy, dark and mysterious — I would speculate that all is part of the core appeal to the fans of these types of works. Sparkling, especially in the sunlight, is like a slap in the face to serious vampire fans.

    (Also, it may raise Mary Sue issues about whether the characters are properly-challenged).

  72. Holliequon 14 Apr 2009 at 7:01 pm

    The Mary Sue issues are a problem, but I think the “vampires are supposed to be” is ridiculous. Vampires were not always sexy, dark and mysterious. (The sparkling is ridiculous. Everything else . . .) I haven’t seen anyone complaining when vampires are portrayed as purely animal, which I’ve seen in a few works I don’t recall right now.

    If it were just the sparkling people complained about, I probably wouldn’t be so bothered. That said, I’ll stop arguing now. XP

  73. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 14 Apr 2009 at 7:42 pm

    A writer can change some aspects of a stock species if they want, but it must be done delicately. Otherwise it may lead to “vampires don’t sparkle!”

  74. Stefan the Exploding Manon 15 Apr 2009 at 4:05 am

    Changing vampire conventions is fine, because authors have a compulsive need to feel that My Vampires Are Different. Vampires don’t have to be dark, sexy and mysterious, but they are from the horror genre. That’s the main reason people feel Stephenie Meyer’s vampires feel ridiculous. The whole point of vampires is that they are walking dead people who feed on blood and that’s the essential vampire. You can add black leather and sex appeal if you like, or animalistic tendencies, but they should inspire fear, because they are creatures of the night.

    Adding sparkling vampires into a romance novel just to spice it up a little feels very gimmicky and forced. The vampires don’t actually need to be in the book, in my opinion.

  75. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 15 Apr 2009 at 5:06 am

    I think vampires could be written into a fantasy story if they were written well. If I ever write such a thing, I will follow these rules:

    Vampires must have blood. Human blood.
    They must be weakened by traditional means, or still remain tied to them. Eg, if a vampire does not burst into flames in the sun, he must get sunstroke or get extremely bad sunburn. They must either be unable to cross running water or have a paralysing fear of it.
    There must be more telltale ways to discover vampirism, like scars on their backs if they have wings or heaps of extra iron in their blood.
    No sparkles.

    Hmm, now I have an idea. I’ll think about it more and consider using it. Farewell!

    (Pulls black cape over face, runs away cackling)

  76. Lunajamniaon 15 Apr 2009 at 7:17 am

    I think it’s a lovely idea. (Though I don’t read too many vampire books anymore, promised myself I wouldn’t … standards and all that)

  77. B. Macon 15 Apr 2009 at 7:57 am

    Hey, Stefan. I edited your comment to add a link to the TV Tropes article on Our Vampires Are Different.

  78. Marissaon 15 Apr 2009 at 12:28 pm

    Yeah. A side project that distracted me from my superhero novel very much included vampires, or one at least, and wooden objects to the heart killed them, crosses burned them, sun… Well, it worked more like the vampires in I Am Legend, where it just burned them very quickly. And he’s never tame. Like, no matter how good a friend/ally the girl is, if she gets in the way of his feeding, her life is in immediate danger. Priorities are different, in my vampires’ minds. Hahah…

    I’ve never heard of the ‘running water’ one. Supposedly, they can’t cross running water?

  79. B. Macon 15 Apr 2009 at 1:02 pm

    Well, in early-to-middle Christian theology, running water was thought to be purer*. So it was used for cleansing ceremonies like baptisms. So it doesn’t surprise me that the (pure) water would be thought effective against vampires. Holy water is also typically effective against vampires.

    *There’s some truth to this; I think it’s because the churning makes it harder for bacteria to grow.

  80. Tomon 15 Apr 2009 at 1:16 pm

    Running water is almost always safe to drink. Bacteria can’t grow in a moving stream, it’s simply not possible. Stagnant water is almost always NOT safe to drink (in nature), as it provides perfect conditions for bacterial growth. So yeah, running water is purer.

  81. Dforceon 15 Apr 2009 at 2:58 pm


    If I were to use “my vampires,” which would be quasi-scientifically-backed, in a superhero story– how jarring would it be? My rationale is that this would be done before I had run out of ideas– so as to avoid it being Jumping the Shark, and that I would potentially pick up another hero (a vampire) to my roster.

    They would be part of a virus that leaked from the government, and in no way literally “cursed” or “religious.”


  82. Tomon 15 Apr 2009 at 3:02 pm

    My thought is, for reference, use the infected from the various incarnations of the ‘I am Legend’ movies. Most features of a vampire can be explained scientifically. Lust for blood? They Metabolise iron too fast, so they need to take it. Sunlight allergy? Limited thermoregulatory abilities (which extends to heat in general). Pale skin? Lack of sunlight exposure. Weakness to holy water? Okay not HOLY water but they could have a bad chemical reaction to water. No reflection? Not scientifically possible.

  83. Ragged Boyon 15 Apr 2009 at 4:10 pm

    I don’t see myself using vampires anytime soon. I don’t like most fantasy cliches. However, it would be interesting to throw some classic horror monsters into a futuristic setting and see them adapt. Eww, what am I talking about? Jason X was awful. No thanks, no horror cliches for me.

    Although, it seems pretty cool to not cast a shadow or reflection. Perfect stealth. Hey, I think I just came up with a villain concept.

  84. B. Macon 15 Apr 2009 at 4:34 pm

    Tom, I think there are a few insects that lack reflections.

  85. Lunajamniaon 15 Apr 2009 at 6:35 pm

    *And there are those coats that ‘reflect’ light waves or something/bounce them back … maybe the vampires could be wearing those? ‘Cept they’d be robes with a hood?

    Oh wait … that’d make them completely invisible. :/

    This is funny–my lame joke couldn’t even be a lame joke ’cause I screwed it up.

    *this is where you discover how horrible my jokes are, ’twas going to be something along the lines of the vampires having no reflections because they wore the special jackets.

    Except those jackets, of course, do not work just for mirrors but ALL the time

  86. Dforceon 15 Apr 2009 at 7:43 pm

    … maybe there’s a switch? lol

  87. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 15 Apr 2009 at 8:52 pm

    “I think there are a few insects that lack reflections”.

    Really? That’s weird.

  88. Wingson 30 Apr 2009 at 5:13 pm

    Oh, don’t even get me started.


    Me: …..so, yeah, I don’t like Twilight.

    Girls: Whaaat???

    *girl next to me stares like I’ve got a third eye*

    Boys: *happy*

    Me: *turns to boys* Am I the only girl in this school who doesn’t like Twilight?

    Pierce’s Creator (who is a guy): Actually, you may be the ONLY girl who doesn’t like Twilight.

    *a long conversation begins with us first discussing how Edward has ruined the reputation of vampires, and ending with a discussion of ways to kill the Jonas Brothers*

    I’ve probably commented on Twilight more in the other forums, like the Eragon one and “Bad Writing Question.” There is a long, long rant. Just replace Eragon with Twilight, and ta da! Instant Rant, just add tears.

    – Wings

  89. stella tellson 30 Apr 2009 at 7:11 pm

    This makes me delighted that I haven’t read the book at all. 🙂

  90. Davidon 30 Apr 2009 at 8:01 pm

    just out of cureosaty who published twilit and Eragon?

  91. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 30 Apr 2009 at 9:13 pm

    Eragon was published by Alfred A. Knopf.

    Twilight was published by Little, Brown and Company.

  92. B. Macon 30 Apr 2009 at 9:36 pm

    I’m not too surprised that guys got happy when you hated on Twilight. Similarly, female sports fans tend to attract mobs of men. When a girl says “I like sports,” the guy hears “I share so much in common with you.” Ragging on Twilight, chick flicks, and other things that men just don’t get might have a similar effect to some extent.

  93. Vinon 01 May 2009 at 6:57 pm

    Look everybody, the fact of the matter is that Twilight was good enough to be a published novel in someone’s eyes. Besides, author’s first novels are seldom above and beyond. Just look at Robert Parker’s first novel.

  94. Davidon 01 May 2009 at 7:03 pm

    Vin has a point i mean there is no such thing as a perfect novel people liked what they read with Twilit and Eragon and both were liked enough to be made in to movies

    now personly i enjoyed the movie but iv never the book of twilt or Eragon

  95. BlueBamferGirlon 12 May 2009 at 4:34 pm

    I just read some of the stories from the Twilightsucks web site, and their are some CRAZY fans out there!
    Where do they come from!? Some wierd, Tribe of the Twilighters Cult?
    I mean, I like the book, but there was a girl who broke a girls arm over it.
    Who does stuff like that over a book?!

  96. jimmycrackcornon 14 May 2009 at 1:48 pm

    Yeah, Twilight sucked, but I’m a guy. Alternatively, it just goes to show that the only people who sit around and put books like these under such a microscope, are industry people. I mean this fricking book and Eragon and such, may contain these “flaws” but regular people don’t care. Only people who study this kind of stuff enough to think, “I could have written the first two pages of Twilight much better” are the ones who would think so. And that happens to not be most people who buy the books in the first place, otherwise they probably wouldn’t sell as much. I mean, if everyone were so critical, I’m sure you could tear down a lot of things.

  97. Mr. Briton 14 May 2009 at 1:57 pm

    Just because something sold well does not excuse its lack of quality. Films like Date Movie sold tickets well enough to merit several ‘sequels’ but this does not distract from the awfulness of the film.

    The problem is that it appeals to the right market and it’s a market that is willing to overlook poor writing because it gets the story it wants. This book is indefensible.

    Claiming that a book can be bad because it is the first published effort is insane. The first time you cook a meal as a chef, you cannot burn it. The first time you fly a plane, you cannot crash it. The first time you publish a book, you cannot publish a bad one.

  98. jimmycrackcornon 14 May 2009 at 8:33 pm

    yeah whatever you say, but the point is readers, like what they like. And most people dont give a damn, about that kind of crap as long as they are entertained. I mean when you read a book with a normal eye, you are much more satisfied with the experience. But when you learn about the billion and one rules to writing a book, and then read one and criticize it based upon any one of those, then of course its gonna seem like crap. I mean heck theres probaly some “perfectly” written CRAP books out there but thats not what is gonna make a reader read it. Im not going to read a couple hundred pages of an excellently written book of boredom. All im saying is flaws are flaws whatever they are, however nit picky personal peeves tend not to bother the average person if the story itself still manages to draw them in enough to have such a following.

  99. Stefan the Exploding Manon 14 May 2009 at 8:40 pm

    There’s a distinct difference between a book that is commercially successul and a book that is actually good. The Da Vinci Code, for instance, is an international bestseller, but that doesn’t make Dan Brown a good author.

    If, as you say, loads of people are picking up books that are rubbish by anyone’s standards, then perhaps there is a problem with today’s readers.

  100. B. Macon 14 May 2009 at 8:50 pm

    I think that writers like sites like this one because quality helps get books published and sell well. Sure, you could have an awful book turn into a bestseller. It happens occasionally. But Twilight was one out of a million awful first manuscripts written that year. The odds of an awful first manuscript succeeding with publishers and readers are horribly low. If you submit a bad manuscript thinking “it happened for Twilight and Eragon, so it’s going to happen for me!” then you will probably be very, very disappointed.

    Alternately… “Sanjaya on American Idol got a record deal, so I will too!” That didn’t work out so well for Emma Czikai. In contrast, when the super-talented Susan Boyle started singing, it was a foregone conclusion that she was going to be a superstar.

  101. Wingson 18 May 2009 at 10:38 am

    Not ALL readers think Twilight was great. I’m actually one of the rare girls who read Twilight and hated it.

    Regular people like it? Gee, does that make me a superhuman?

    And Twilight was entertaining? Are you sure? Really? Honestly?

    – Wings

  102. Anubison 20 May 2009 at 9:21 pm

    I still wince when some of the more respectable people I know say that Twilight was an entertaining read and that the movie was good. Perhaps it’s just my background in creative arts, but the book was more boring than ‘War and Peace’ *and* ‘War and Remembrance.’ As for the movie, I honestly couldn’t sit through more than about a minute before mentally listing how I would have shot this scene and redone that special effect with more of an eye for detail.

    The only good thing about the movie is that they picked people who matched the characters in the book in terms of stale acting, 1/10th-dimensional character personalities, and such.

    While I don’t believe the books should be burnt, I do believe that they should be used in a class titled “How to make tons of money proving people are idiots.” Wait, that’s what lawyers do (I kid, I kid!).

    Actually, talking about how Edward has the current market of “hot girl crush”, I’ve realized something. I much preferred it back in the ’90’s when they went ga-ga over the boy-bands.

    At least the music could be danced to. And remixed. And makes a good morning alarm. Yes, you *will* wake up, get out of bed, and cross the room just to shut off “Dirty POP”.

    ~Anubis “I’m just a ferryman” Twain ^_-

  103. Tomon 30 May 2009 at 11:09 am

    Okay, so I caved and touched the book with a ten-foot pole. Yeah, it’s as bad as they say. B. Mac, as an exercise in your sub-editing skills, try proof-reading the entire book and fixing all of the problems with grammar, sentence structure etc. Then try to find all of the typos (there’s a ridiculous number) then fix all of the problems with Mary Sue- and Marty Stu-isms. You’ll be at it for a while…

  104. Ragged Boyon 30 May 2009 at 11:19 am

    I’m going to try to read the first chapter and see for myself if it’s as good or bad as people say it is.

  105. Wingson 30 May 2009 at 11:33 am

    Here’s a effort cookie in advance, Rags. You’re gonna need it…

    Looking back, I still can’t believe how much of a Sue Bella is. I mean, she’s not *supposed* to be incredibly beautiful or anything, but she has boys falling for her left and right (Just look at Mike Newton!).

    And clumsiness is her flaw? Heck, I am exceedingly clumsy. It isn’t cute or adorable (the fan’s words, not mine). I fell down an escalator once, and it’s not fun. Seriously.

    Fact of the day: The only thing scarier than a Twilight fangirl is a Twilight fanBOY. They exist. I’ve heard of them.


  106. B. Macon 30 May 2009 at 11:37 am

    I don’t remember where I saw this, but I vaguely remember reading that the book describes Cullen as beautiful, sexy or otherwise desirable over 300 times. Does that sound believable?

  107. Wingson 30 May 2009 at 11:52 am

    Heck yes. I read all four books (My mother bought them, and tried to make me go see the movie. Needless to say, I refused multiple times).

    Honestly, she’s obsessed (She bought a pirated copy of the Twilight movie. How much worse can it get?).

    – Wings

  108. notsohottopicon 30 May 2009 at 12:02 pm

    Twilight is relatable because it writes like fanfiction. See Anne Rice about this to delve into it further. I really don’t like Twilight, due the fact that it has ruined the vampire genre for me. I mean, what happened to Dracula and Nosferatu? Nosferatu was really fugly, and he still did the weird stalking thing(the famous window scene).

    Anyways, so Twilight appealed to the quiet desires preteen girls and some mentally 13 adults have, being fought over by a really hot vampire. And like I said, it writes like fanfiction, so it appeals to the mass amounts of mediocre fanfiction writers as well. There is some allure to the vampire genre, although I don’t like this aspect itself.

  109. Tomon 30 May 2009 at 12:12 pm

    I’ve noticed a very disturbing trend in vampire fiction. There’s a helluvalot of self-inserts. This may surprise you, but I assure you it’s true. Three cases in points:

    1. Twilight. I don’t think I need to explain this.
    2. Darren Shan. It was written by a guy called Darren Shan, about a vampire called Darren Shan. Does this need explaining too?
    3. Dracula. No, seriously, I’m not kidding. Dracula, by Abraham ‘Bram’ Stoker, has a character called Abraham Van Helsing who’s a Mary Sue if I ever saw one.

    Notice how the three of them have male vampires as lead characters, and that this theory doesn’t apply to works where vampires aren’t main characters. Also worth noting that only in Dracula was a vampire not a protagonist (unless you count Mina, who really doesn’t count).

    I’m going to read Darren Shan and the rest of the Twilight novels, then I’m going to write an essay on this theory. I’m still curious as to the why. Why do vampire novels attract Author Avatars?

  110. notsohottopicon 30 May 2009 at 12:26 pm

    What about Queen of the Damned? Vampire rockstar by day, drinking the blood of groupies by night. The female investigator seemed rather self insert-ish. Both the author and the female investigator were in their mid-thirties, rockstar vampire falls for her in the end.

  111. Tomon 30 May 2009 at 12:46 pm

    Hmm… yet another example where the vampire is male. I wish I knew why that’s the case… Why is it always a male vampire as a main character?

  112. notsohottopicon 30 May 2009 at 2:20 pm

    Not necessarily…Vampira was famous way back in the day…think of her as Morticia Addams, except single and a vampire…

  113. Marissaon 30 May 2009 at 3:11 pm

    The Darren Shan novels aren’t written by a guy by that name. It’s like Lemony Snicket: He took on the name as a stylistic effect.

  114. Mr. Briton 30 May 2009 at 3:14 pm

    I’d say male vampires work better as protagonists because women are traditionally innocent. Vampires, as a rule, are very un-innocent so a male vampire feels more natural. This was a key idea in Dracula, the Count’s first victim in England being the innocent Lucy and later, Mina. It also shows up in Hellsing where the main vampire, Alucard, transforms a young woman called Seras into a vampire. Seras is specifically stated to be a virgin and refuses to drink blood until the man she loves is dying. It’s even in Twilight. Edward is the seasoned vampire while Bella is an innocent introduced to his world. It would have a very different feel if the genders were reversed.
    That’s just my theory obviously. I know there are a great many subversions of this but it’s a consistant idea.

  115. Tomon 30 May 2009 at 3:20 pm

    @Marissa: Oh, whoops, my bad!

  116. Mr. Briton 30 May 2009 at 3:26 pm

    It wasn’t much of a change though. His real name is Darren O’Shaughnessy so Darren Shan was probably chosen because it’s a bit more marketable than O’Shaughnessy.

  117. Tomon 30 May 2009 at 3:29 pm

    And my theory still stands!

  118. B. Macon 30 May 2009 at 7:51 pm

    We have a building called O’Shaughnessy Hall on campus. A vocal minority insists on calling it O’Shagadelic. Hmm…

  119. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 30 May 2009 at 9:43 pm

    I have a little idea for a vampire story, but I am staying the hell away from self inserts.

    I am guilty of having a male vampire, though, but my concept is nothing like Edward freaking Cullen. I plan for magic to be a common and accepted part of all society. But like I said, it’s only an idea right now.

  120. Tomon 31 May 2009 at 3:26 am

    Please make it a self-insert, that’ll give more fuel for my theory! 😀

  121. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 31 May 2009 at 4:16 am

    😀 I think I’ll pass on that. I’m not interesting enough. Haha. I’d probably turn out like Bella (only without the vampires and guys fawning over me, haha)

  122. Tomon 31 May 2009 at 4:59 am

    No! Turn out like Bella! That’ll make the comparisons even easier.

    Some day I’m going to write a brilliant essay on vampire fiction and author-insertion.

  123. Wingson 31 May 2009 at 8:45 am

    New idea, Whovian?

    I just sent one of my first ideas to the great and mighty Garbage Can of Knowledge. 🙁 But it had to be done.

    This summer I promise I’ll work more on HTSTW. However I’ll also be typing out my first draft for Between Light and Darkness since I already sketched out the plot in its entirety. And I can’t neglect my fanfiction– it’s relaxing to write and fun!

    And just to stay on topic, I hate Twilight!

    – Wings

  124. FarawaySoulon 11 Jul 2009 at 5:49 pm

    Yay, more people that hate Twilight! Same here…

    The book is definitely not written well… the story is stupid… and the characters seem too perfect sometimes, then completely different other times.

    It doesn’t help me that everyone I know at school is a Twilight fan (so much they give Twilight nicknames to everyone else. I have choked to death everyone who dares call me Edward Cu… *heaves*)

    Seriously. I enjoyed the Saga of Darren Shan hundreds of times more than Twilight.

  125. Marissaon 11 Jul 2009 at 5:51 pm

    …I loved Darren Shan. Is that bad?

  126. FarawaySoulon 11 Jul 2009 at 7:13 pm

    No. I just said it badly – the way I said it, it sounds like Darren Shan sucks :/


  127. Wingson 11 Jul 2009 at 10:31 pm

    Thank you, FarawaySoul!

    I feel the same way you do – I’m the only girl in my class who doesn’t love Twilight. Needless to say, I don’t have many female friends. Haha! 😉

    I detest that excuse for a book.

  128. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 11 Jul 2009 at 11:51 pm

    “I have choked to death everyone who dares call me Edward Cu… *heaves*”

    I’m ridiculously pale, literally like a vampire because I always wear sunscreen. Not too long ago, a girl I know told me that I look like a female Edward. My first thoughts were to say that at least I am not a crazy abusive jerk, and that Edward Cullen is so two dimensional that he could be shoved through a mail slot. Haha. Instead I said “thanks…?”

  129. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 17 Jul 2009 at 4:39 am

    Oh my God, check this out:


    That’s just sad. Some Twilight fans are utterly, utterly crazy. Some Harry Potter fans sent death threats to a band that tried to sue J K Rowling, but that’s not as bad as this.

  130. Yogion 17 Jul 2009 at 5:45 am


    This is sadder. Honestly, getting pregnant with the child of a guy just because his name is Edward…. and then naming said baby Renesmee Bella Stephenie. There’s also that time someone came up to Rob, asking him to sign their edward vibrator dolls…..

  131. ShardReaperon 17 Jul 2009 at 7:50 am

    Okay, why the hell aren’t Christian groups stepping in?! What, a kid who goes to school to defend himself is bad, but an albino-ish vampire who watches his girl sleeping and acts like her pimp is okay?

  132. […] Superhero Nation: [editing twilight page one | page […]

  133. Marissaon 17 Sep 2009 at 7:42 pm

    B. Mac, I’d tell you via G-Talk if you were online, but…

    On 9/11, one would expect a front page commemoration in the newspaper, am I wrong? Apparently I am, because we had a full-page ad for TwilightFest in Forks on the front page, plus a whole five-page insert on the event and the series it commemorates. On 9/11.

    I’m very proud to say that our dear Ean wrote an absolutely furious letter to the editor, and at least two others did the same.

    Ugh. Just… ugh.

  134. Eanon 17 Sep 2009 at 8:06 pm

    Yes, and let’s not forget the later coverage wherein it was noted that two couples renewed their wedding vows to a Twilight theme!

    “Though we are no longer in the twilight of our love, we have braved the new moon and weathered the eclipse, and I still look forward to every breaking dawn with you.”

    Wouldn’t “the twilight of their love” indicate that their relationship was losing its sparkle?

    Here’s the full story: http://www.peninsuladailynews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2009309139987 Do a search for Twilight on there if you have a masochistic desire to read more. XP

  135. Ghoston 18 Sep 2009 at 7:29 am

    I could add a bunch of foul language to this comment, but I can’t seem to work up the self rightousness. This whole post just speacks to the sad state of affairs that society has slipped into. Instead of worrying about things like healthcare and honoring our dead, we would rather focus on a series of books (that in my opinion was good but not well written). Sometimes when I see articles like these, I find myself wondering exactly why I fought in a war.

  136. Ghoston 18 Sep 2009 at 7:31 am

    P.S. I was actually talking about Marissa’s and Ean’s post, not the whole forum.

  137. Wingson 18 Sep 2009 at 8:14 am

    I’m appalled.

    That’s all I need to say.

    – Wings

  138. Ghoston 18 Sep 2009 at 8:35 am

    By me or by them?

  139. Wingson 18 Sep 2009 at 9:00 am

    By the whole Twilight issue. Not you guys – you guys are Good People, according to “The Wings Guide To Good People, Idiots, and Those With Issues”.

    Personally, I’d LOVE to write to Stephanie Meyer with a few of the nastier things her fans have done (You know those genius seven year olds? Well, one actually read Twilight and said it was a horrible book. Then her older brother’s girlfriend got angry and killed the kid’s goldfish. I can go on).

    This is one of those times when I’m almost ashamed to be a writer, seeing all of the crap that passes for “bestseller” these days. I mean, I’m a reader. I stumbled across countless good books – and found a few books that leave me going “Why the hell isn’t this a movie? Why isn’t it a bestseller?”

    Personally, I wrote a book when I was seven. True, it was a bit more like a giant plot summary, but considering that I, a mere first grader, managed to bang out forty pages of solid text… And I honestly consider it to be better than Twilight. True, it was cliched nearly all the time, could have had a much better plot, and required character depth for nearly everyone, but then again Twilight isn’t all that much better.

    Honestly, some people can be *long string of cuss words spoken in a mixture of French, Spanish, and Japanese*.

    – Wings

  140. Wingson 18 Sep 2009 at 9:00 am

    *looks back at post*

    I sound a bit arrogant…I’m sorry.

    – Wings

  141. Eanon 18 Sep 2009 at 11:36 am

    Twilight is one of the few things about which I can get righteously angry. You’re forgiven in my book, Wings. 😉

    Anyway, Stephenie Meyer has apparently bought a house near where we live (front page news!), so maybe she’ll see my anti-Twilight column when I write it.

  142. Wingson 18 Sep 2009 at 12:09 pm

    Front page news?!? How is THAT deserving?!?

    When you write your anti-Twilight column tell us about it so that we can all thank you.

    – Wings

  143. Marissaon 18 Sep 2009 at 12:40 pm

    Wait, hold the phones, she bought a HOUSE here?!

  144. Marissaon 18 Sep 2009 at 12:53 pm

    Not too opposed, actually. They didn’t catch me the first time. ;D

  145. Wingson 18 Sep 2009 at 1:56 pm

    If anything, you may borrow my Lunchbox of Destruction to wreak havoc.

    Now, back to my plushie-making. I’m getting rather good!

    – Wings

  146. Eanon 18 Sep 2009 at 3:54 pm

    I love plushies! Here’s a møøse plushie I made way back when: http://www.majhost.com/gallery/Shine/Stuff/mooseplush.png

    Also, http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2472/3932669480_3806d77e3e.jpg is my letter to the editor. My mom was so proud, she cut it out and taped it to the fridge.

  147. Eanon 18 Sep 2009 at 3:58 pm

    Of course, I may be “doin it rong”, as they say on the Internets.

    And in our newspaper’s defense…well, it covers pretty small, rural communities which I’d call suburban except we’re nowhere near an urban environment. So not much big news, y’know?

  148. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 27 Sep 2009 at 10:48 pm

    What? I’ve missed out on a lot here. A couple renewing their wedding vows to Twilight?!

    I swear the publishing house must’ve sprinkled some drug into the book, and only a few are unaffected.

    In both Girlfriend and Dolly magazine, (kind of like the Aussie version of Cosmo, except toned down) Twilight is referenced on nearly every page. Even my friend, a die-hard Twihard gave up on it and now hates it more than anyone else. Once there was a 200 page bonus magazine included as an extra, all about Twilight. Grr. I love those magazines, but I cannot wait for the day when Twilight will be taken over by something actually worth all the attention.

    But I have some worthy ammo against crazy Twihards. The guy who plays Jacob was in The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl as Sharkboy, a movie that only has 20/100 at Rotten Tomatoes. Also, I think you will agree with me, that Robert Pattinson did a much better job as Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter, where he was able to use his native accent, too. The make up on him in Twilight was terrible, don’t get me started on the sparkling. It had SOUND EFFECTS FOR THE FREAKING SPARKLING.

  149. Wingson 28 Sep 2009 at 9:45 am

    I went to Barnes and Noble yesterday. They now have a complete section for vampire novels. I have half a mind to write a vampire novel in which I parody and mock every vampire cliche.

    *The blonde female vampire bares inch-long fangs as she advances ion the mortal boy. She looks more shocked than scared at this point. Seeing his expression, she takes a step forward*

    Female Vampire: Oh, what, did you honestly think we;’re all brooding gothic antiheros with cute little fangs? How dumb are you mortals?

    Human Guy: Well, I didn’t believe the sparkling in sunlight thing..

    Female Vampire: Good, then you aren’t as stupid as you look.

    Haha, I’d like to write that.

    – Wings

  150. NewAgeZombion 27 Oct 2009 at 1:33 pm

    I used to like Twilight, but I woke up when I saw the movie. Now I have to suffer through my parents (mostly my dad, actually, but he thankfully still reads other stuff) and other teenaged girls. In my opinion, Peeps is vampire(/zombie/whatever) fiction done RIGHT. The quality decreased greatly in The Last Days, I’m sorry to say.

    LJane also writes notable fiction, but I must admit to only reading The Vampire Diaries, and nothing else by. Unfortunately, whoever made the TV series butchered it.

    Back on topic, Meyer may have been able to pull off the sparkles if she had given us an explanation, but she just dropped it on us. I disagreed with that bit from the beginning.

  151. Amandaon 28 Feb 2010 at 12:14 pm

    A lot of the things your editing you shouldn’t Stephaine Meyer made her book this way because its Bella’s way of speaking no human is perfect and thats what Stephaine Meyer was showing, that all the things you think are unnessesary or coy is what makes Bella the way she is. your gonna piss off a lot of twilight fans cause for one your not reading the book for what it is your reading it to correct things. if you actually dug in and read it without editing every little thing than you’d understand.
    i could go in there and comment on every little thing you edited and show you why it is nessesary.
    like one part where it said she doesn’t sound 14… shes not 14 in the book. she said she had to go to her dads up until she was 14. in the book shes like 18. so of course shes gonna use all those words.. a 14 year old wouldn’t do that and Stephanie Meyer is a great writer and i will support her with this series forever anything you lay down about her twilight saga books i will shut down with every power i got. yeah so some people hate the books they never have an actual reason why!
    if you hate the books so much don’t comment on them just move on in life and forget about them like really. why waste your time pissing other people off just cause you hate them and don’t discourage people from reading them.
    there awesome books for some people. so don’t shut them down just cause you didn’t like them

  152. B. Macon 28 Feb 2010 at 1:03 pm

    Thanks for your comment, Amanda.

    “your gonna piss off a lot of twilight fans cause for one your not reading the book for what it is your reading it to correct things.” If you know anybody like that, I’d recommend suggesting to them that criticism of their favorite works should not be taken as criticism of them. If you love the books, why would it matter to you what anybody else thinks?

  153. Amyon 12 May 2010 at 10:00 am

    I’m by no means a fan of Twilight, except for improving my own work.

    But I felt this article was a little unfair in places. Have you read the book? Many of the points you clamed to be extraneous I actually found effective.

    For example, “My carry-on item was a parka” seemed to me a quick, neat example of showing instead of telling. The contrast to the summer-y clothes previously mentioned was intruiging; certainly better than “I was going to Forks where it would rain a lot, in stark contrast to here” or similar.

    I also felt “good people of Forks” was a nice preconception of Bella’s, possibly indicative of pride and respect for her father’s ability to keep them in line, or even foreshadowing.

    But yes, you definitely made some good points. It would be interesting if you dissected the overall plot in this way; Meyer commits just as many crimes on a large scale, as in the finer details such as lexis.

    Apologies that my first comment here was somewhat negative. I have plenty of positive responses to many other articles. Strange how addictive criticism is, huh?

    Although it explains why Twilight sold so well.

  154. B. Macon 12 May 2010 at 11:00 am

    I have not read the book. Obviously, if I were actually editing the book, I would read it all (repeatedly). However, I was trying to show how assistant editors look at works, and we stop reading as soon as we know we’ll reject it. In practice, that shortcut probably means we lose a few strong manuscripts that start poorly but are otherwise publishable. (For more on that, please see this experiment). But if you have 10 or 15 hours a week to go through hundreds of unsolicited manuscripts, you need to weed out submissions as quickly as possible. That’s probably not 100% fair to the guy who gets rejected because his manuscript starts out worse than it is, but it gives everybody in the pile a chance to get read (eventually).

    Also, umm, I think it’s safe to say that the target audience is largely (purely?) women that read romance. It’s harder to guess whether something will be successful if you’re not part of the target audience, and I’m not. Although it would be an interesting learning experience to try my hand at the first book, I doubt I have the stamina to finish it. I barely made it through the movie, and I only stuck through that because I was the designated driver.

    Many publishers anticipated that Twilight would sell impressively. There was a bidding war, which means it wowed a lot of publishing professionals. They picked up on something I missed. Maybe quality. Maybe audience appeal. Maybe something else. If and when a future bestseller crosses my desk, I really need to get that vibe or I’m probably a liability to my employer.

    “Apologies that my first comment here was somewhat negative.” Don’t sweat it! I learn far more from “negative” comments than from “I really liked this.” And you were very polite about it. I think that goes a long way in this business.

  155. Amyon 12 May 2010 at 11:09 am

    Thank you! I really appreciate your saying so. As for sweating it, I’m less inclined to post my compliment now…but what the hey, I’ll be reckless:

    I’ve been looking around this site for a couple of hours, and the content is far more comprehensive and concise than most websites. Congratulations to you and the other contributers – it’s obvious how much of an influence it’s had on many writers. Definitely surpasses the slush pile.

    I agree that Twilight’s audience are women, but trust me when I say there are other benefits to reading it – it generated such a large response, negative as well as positive, that it inspired me to write a satire of the fantasy genre.
    Of course, for an editor, I imagine reading would go something like:
    -Page one
    -Page two
    -Page three
    -*reaches blindly for any other manuscript to bleach brain*

    so I’d forgive you for not reviewing the entire book.

  156. B. Macon 12 May 2010 at 11:46 am

    “I agree that Twilight’s audience are women, but trust me when I say there are other benefits to reading it – it generated such a large response, negative as well as positive, that it inspired me to write a satire of the fantasy genre.” Ah, yeah. I read through pretty much every superhero story I find–even ones I find awful–because I feel it’s important for me to know what’s going on in my niche. If I wrote fantasy with a heavy romance component, I think that reading Twilight would be useful market research.

    If you’re doing a parody/satire or another sort of commentary about it, reading it is probably not optional. 😉 Otherwise, the parody would probably be shallow or just plain wrong… Sometimes, “parodies” are so far off the mark that I doubt the writers actually know the source material. Have you seen Epic Movie?

  157. Amyon 12 May 2010 at 11:59 am

    It’s the best way. Before you think that Meyerpires are my niche, though, I read far more satire than fantasy, and my writing has only extremely light romantic components. Think a romance-feather.

    As you mentioned, though, “if you only have 5-10 hours a week to go through hundreds of unsolicited manuscripts, you need to weed out submissions as quickly as possible.”
    This worries me…I currently have a short prologue, and am contempleting deleting it. I do feel it contributes to the story, but it is a direct imitation of a Twilight-esque fantasy style. How could I prevent an agent or publisher reading it as the work of a fanfiction hack? Would signposting its relevance in the query alert them to a potential flaw in the novel’s marketing?
    Thankfully it’s easier to target an audience by telling them its genre…I could always advertise on the (crudely but effectively titled) Twilight Sucks forums…

  158. Amyon 12 May 2010 at 12:02 pm

    Ah, Epic Movie…Twilight may offer a wealth of comedic opportunities, but if my book ends up no more sophisticated than the ‘urination in the snow’ scene, it wasn’t worth doing a parody.

    SUBTLETY! That’s the way I need to go. Preferably without shouting “subtlety”.

  159. B. Macon 12 May 2010 at 12:21 pm

    “Would signposting its relevance in the query alert them to a potential flaw in the novel’s marketing?” If the writing doesn’t stand on its own, I would recommend rewriting until it does. One way you could cue the readers to its significance is to overdo the style in a caricaturish way. That should make it pretty clear you’re not just parroting the style, particularly if you mock other things about the book. (For example, you might caricature her voice at the same time you mock her absolute inability to fend for herself). In my experience, distinguishing parody from ripoff is not difficult.

    One red sign would be that the work doesn’t have a “spin” or opinion or slant on the source material. What are you trying to show about the original work? For example, if I were to caricature her helplessness, I’d be arguing that Bella is a helpless, weak protagonist. That’s a pretty conventional criticism of the book, though–hopefully you’ll come up with more insightful stuff.

  160. Amyon 12 May 2010 at 12:31 pm

    I’d certainly hope it’s easy to distinguish as parody, but I’d hate to confuse a sleepy and irritated publisher…good points though, I will try to exaggerate some elements.

    Overall my criticism was the absurdity of vampiric traits. Meyer’s blatant disregard of basic science also irritates me. I’d say my take on vampires is the most original part, though I don’t expect anyone to believe a writer who says that. 😛
    Also, the lack of originality in character creation irked me. My female protagonist is sort of a reformed Bella, as though she actually looked at herself for once. You won’t see her moping at any point. But that’s partially because I wouldn’t be able to stand writing a lead who’s not proactive.

    Thank you for your help so far, I’ll probably be back on tomorrow if not later…finding brilliant new writing websites is love/hate. Hate being that I really, REALLY should be revising.

  161. Loysquaredon 07 Jul 2010 at 4:36 am

    I used to have the book, before the crazy phenomenon started, and I couldn’t even past the fist page. It felt gloomy and heavy, as if I was reading the diary of a depressed emo teenage-girl.

    In addition, isn’t anyone bothered by the relationship that Edward and Bella share?! He is basicallya typical case of statutory rape: a romanticized pedophile. He could be her great-great-great-something! Hahaha. If he were truly a gentleman, he would’ve waited until she came of age. That’s quite the role-model for young girls…

  162. B. Macon 07 Jul 2010 at 7:06 am

    “In addition, isn’t anyone bothered by the relationship that Edward and Bella share?! He is basicallya typical case of statutory rape: a romanticized pedophile. He could be her great-great-great-something!” Haha. See this and


  163. Loysquaredon 08 Jul 2010 at 10:45 am

    Hey, B. Mac! Check this out. I don’t know how to post links, but I’ll try and post this URL (or whatever it’s called), anyway:

    WARNING: Gross imagery ahead, may induce foul repercussions. Proceed at own risk.

  164. Queeequegon 12 Jul 2010 at 12:32 pm

    An interesting piece: I agree with some of what you’ve said, but I also think quite a lot is out-of-context – for example, you ask why it is relevant that Bella’s “carry-on item was a parka”; if you’d put this in context with the rest of the chapter that you’ve edited here, you might have noticed that the contrast between what she wears in Phoenix and what she wears in Forks are demonstrated by the sleeveless lace top and the raincoat. Clunky, perhaps, but surely not irrelevant? As well as this, the element of contrast to which the word “but” in the phrase “But… eyes” is referring to the immediacy and willingness implied by the phrase “I’ll come right back”. So it’s about the spoken phrase immediately previous to it, perhaps a fairly subtle link (for this writer, at least)?

    Also, the “chatty”, slightly awkward dialogue is an indicator of Bella’s character and how she interacts with other people, and Bella’s not meant to be fourteen. She’s seventeen when this is being written, so while not quite an English-lit major, considering her reading habits and the fact that she is several years older than how you have mistakenly (I assume) taken her to be here, she is closer than you might appear to have imagined.

    Yes, I do agree with your opinions, and I like your fresh, academic approach to this book, as opposed to mindless hating and cutting down of everything in the book, but I think you need to look over this and think in context and review.

  165. B. Macon 12 Jul 2010 at 7:04 pm

    “Also, the ‘chatty’, slightly awkward dialogue is an indicator of Bella’s character and how she interacts with other people…”

    I don’t know. If you’re trying to develop her character or style with dialogue, you can probably do better than “Tell Charlie I said hi.”/”I will.” For example, if she’s rebellious, she might say something like “I’ll think about it,” or if she’s perpetually polite she might say something like “I do every time!” In contrast, I think “I will” doesn’t really say much about her character because it’s a banal way to agree to a banal request. (Particularly in contrast with something extraordinary like “If you ever get a chance to make it look like an accident, you’ll kill him, won’t you?”, in any case).

    “…considering her reading habits and the fact that she is several years older than how you have mistakenly (I assume) taken her to be here, she is closer than you might appear to have imagined.”

    Good call. In retrospect, I think that you’re right that she’s describing this several years after the events happened, so the language is a bit more excusable. I’m still wondering about what sort of 17 year old (she’s 17?) would use phrases like “omnipresent shade,” though. Maybe it’s a girl thing. 😉

  166. NicKennyon 18 Jul 2010 at 2:56 am

    Look, there’s nothing special about what Meyer did. She picked up the trail of people left in the lurch when Harry Potter ended. Something was going to. And while I’m at it, was anyone else really dissapointed with HP & TDH? Seriously why kill Fred? Really? How did that contribute to the story. Why? Why? And Lupin? And Tonks? Sorry, I need a moment….

  167. eric ellerton 18 Jul 2010 at 11:54 am

    I’ve had somethign like this on my mind for a while. No offence to the webmaster, but Stephanie Meyer breaks every rule every writing book and critique group seems to mention…and somehow she got through the agent gatekeeper and the editor gatekeeper. So who cares if you think it’s good. Anybody could find fault with someone else’s work, but your critique doesn’t bring us any closer to being published, unless of course she got lucky or knew someone and her writing style/success was a one off not to be repeated, but i don’t think so. My neighbor sucks as a writer, and she snagged a big agent right away and has at least one novel out, boring as can be and, in my opnion, done a thousand times before, better, but there she is. (and yes, chalk up fity percent of my criticism to sour grapes, but not the other fifty, she’s a nice lady, she just can’t write.)

    That much said, I forced myself to read the first book in the series, had to start and stop four different times over a couple of weeks. All in all, and this might be a plus, it reads like what I imagine a young girl’s journal might read. Someone commented on that really young country singer, you know the one onstage with kanye west. The critic made the point that the audience didn’t love her because she wrote more maturely thatn your average 17 year old, they loved her because she wrote and thought just like them.

  168. Lighting Manon 18 Jul 2010 at 2:14 pm

    But there is an immense middle bar between setting out to write the next great american novel and setting out to write the next…Sorcerer’s Apprentice. The majority of people here want to write something that not only sells, but happens to be of quality,so yes, while bashing Twilight relentlessly is fun and something it wholly deserves, it also serves to educate each of us by illuminating the precise nature of every single dire and minor mistake that she made along the way. It also serves to educate readers, because she was a fluke, she got lucky or came across an agent and editor with amazing capitalistic vision. We can’t write crap and expect the same luck, we need to have quality of workmanship in addition to the quality of our writing if we want any chance of making it.

  169. Wingson 18 Jul 2010 at 3:16 pm

    I have met far too many people (read: Not just the rabid, drooling fangirls, but people who otherwise I believe to be very intelligent) who believe the trainwreck that is Twilight to be better than the works of Jane Austen, S. Morgenstein, and Shakespeare combined to allot the series any of my respect. ‘Nuff said.

    It’s amazing, the number of budding writers I’ve met who want to be just like Christopher Paolini and Stephenie Meyer, all trying to write “just like them, that way I’ll get published and become famous!”.

    I’ll make no further comment of Twilight and Eragon, but relying on mimicry and luck to get published? Not exactly the best career move.

    – Wings

  170. B. Macon 18 Jul 2010 at 5:14 pm

    “Anybody could find fault with someone else’s work, but your critique doesn’t bring us any closer to being published, unless of course she got lucky or knew someone and her writing style/success was a one off not to be repeated, but i don’t think so.”

    I don’t work with this genre or target audience often, but I’ve heard it’s a running joke among YA editors how many prospective authors are trying to sell (bad) manuscripts about beautiful girls and the supernatural creatures that swoon for them. I think that trying to emulate the last big thing (Twilight, for example) is quite difficult because:

    1) Thousands of other authors are pitching Twilight-knockoff manuscripts themselves.

    2) Booksellers and librarians are kind of tired of such books at this point.

    3) These authors rarely have the marketing & premarketing talent that helped Stephenie Meier stand out.

    But if you’re convinced that the editor will think “Great Googly Moogly, of all the hundreds of Twilight-knockoffs I’ve seen this year, THIS is the one I want to publish,” then go for it. It’ll cost you nothing but your time.

    However, in publishing I would always expect to be the norm rather than the exception. Some authors get published even though their characters are poorly developed and/or inadequately motivated, but I wouldn’t bet a year or two writing a manuscript that I’ll be one of them. (And, for what it’s worth, I think I have above-average marketing skills).

  171. B. Macon 18 Jul 2010 at 8:51 pm

    And while I’m at it, was anyone else really dissapointed with HP & TDH? Seriously why kill Fred? Really? How did that contribute to the story. Why? Why? And Lupin? And Tonks? Sorry, I need a moment….

    I was disappointed by Harry Potters 2 and 4-7, but only because 1 and 3 set an impossibly high standard. So, yeah, I was not thrilled by TDH, but I think it was still one of the best novels I read that year (2007, I think). 2007-8 were pretty awful. Playing for Pizza was pretty good, but most of the bestsellers had synopses like this: “Scot Harvath, a Homeland Security superagent, searches for an ancient secret that could defeat Islamic militants*.” (Really).

    Adding to the surreality of The Last Patriot by Brad Thor: the author’s nonfiction work. (He reported two months ago that Mullah Omar had been captured, but I don’t think any strong evidence has emerged to support that–unfortunately).

    *Unlike the New York Times bestseller’s list, the book probably did not refer to the antagonists as “militants.”

  172. ShardReaperon 19 Jul 2010 at 3:50 pm

    I found TDH to be the best out of the seven; the weakest link was probably the first one. But that’s just me.

  173. Wingson 19 Jul 2010 at 7:06 pm

    A lot of fans I know say that the first is the weakest, although opinions vary on which is best.

    …I liked POA, and I liked TDH, the latter mainly because everything in the earlier books now made sense (And it made me reread the first books to look for Chekov’s Guns).

    – Wings

  174. Eric Ellerton 20 Jul 2010 at 6:51 am

    Speaking of Harry Potter. I’m about JK rowling’s age, and although I’m surer saturday morning US tv was differnet than uk tv, so much of her book is lifted from things I’ve seen in old b science movies or even abot and costello. gratnee it’s put together in a new form, but I’ve seen, i think, to many of her influences to be surprised, and she did dive into the tolkien pool with that spider. They say everyone steals from him, but when you do, it’s never quite as believable for some reason.

    And you can thank him for having to read beowulf in high school…his translating it in the forties gave it a new lease on life.

  175. Eric Ellerton 20 Jul 2010 at 6:52 am

    Just a question. Then how did Stephanie Meyer get published if she’s so flawed?

  176. B. Macon 20 Jul 2010 at 8:51 am

    Marketing prowess, I suspect. Plus, I think that the concept of a YA supernatural romance felt novel then. More novel than now, certainly.

  177. Wingson 20 Jul 2010 at 10:09 am

    Tell me about it. I can’t go into a bookstore without seeing a few dozen different stories about vampires…although ghosts, werewolves, and even Jekyll and Hyde have been tainted by this epidemic.

    – Wings

  178. ericellert@yahoo.comon 21 Jul 2010 at 6:30 am

    They’ve gotten racy too. I saw a cover prominently displayed that showed a girl reaching into some guys pants.

  179. Wingson 22 Jul 2010 at 11:27 am

    …If the book was prominently displayed (as most vampire novels are these days), was the store idiotic enough to put it somewhere kids could get a hold of it? I mean, I’ve seen Breaking Dawn shelved in the children’s section. What the hell, Borders?! And to think I though racy covers would be limited to those trashy ripped-bodice romance fanfics (I refuse to dignify them by calling them novels. They are fanfictions of reality, nothing more.). Depressing that the trend has spread to supposedly “good” literature.

    By the way, the likes of Pride and Prejudice and Wuthering Heights are getting republished with Twilight-esque covers (you know, all black with a flower of something). Sickening.

    – Wings

  180. B. Macon 22 Jul 2010 at 2:26 pm

    I’ve got some taglines in mind for the restyling of Pride and Prejudice and Wuthering Heights:
    –Like Twilight, but good
    –Romance needn’t suck
    –Edward Cullen – teenage angst + depth = Darcy [In some imaginings, he even has superpowers]

  181. ShardReaperon 22 Jul 2010 at 2:52 pm

    @Wings someday, I’m going to create a time machine and erase the idea of ripped-bodice book covers from the minds of writers everywhere!

  182. Wingson 22 Jul 2010 at 3:19 pm

    Seriously, it’s either (a) a massive middle finger at Twilight and an attempt to fool readers into thinking that the books are Twilight books, or (b) just another way to make money off the craze. I’m rolling with B.

    ShardReaper, when you do this, take me with you. I have a few ideas that I’d like to put in motion…

    *An image of the future is shown, with signs saying “All Hail Wings, Ruler of the Universe” hanging everywhere*

    I kid…Or maybe that’s just what I want you to think…kekeke…

    – Wings

  183. Eric Ellerton 22 Jul 2010 at 3:28 pm

    Actually each ny barnes and noble has a different quirk. (some let dogs in, this one has a baby carriage “parking lot”

    The whole wall is full of YA stuff and I’m sure that they displayed it purposfully, though I have to admit, though I haven’t really been looking out for it, I haven’t noticed it lately.

    the only difference between a lot of the titles and bodice rippers seems to be the age of the characters.

  184. Wingson 22 Jul 2010 at 3:37 pm

    Not that much difference. Lolicon* remains prominent in bodice rippers, and there’s plenty of pedophile connotations in the Twilight series (Hello, Edward. Hello, Jacob.)

    – Wings

    * http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/Lolicon

  185. eric ellerton 23 Jul 2010 at 6:52 am

    I haven’t read them all, but one reviewer made the point that they promote staying with an abusive boyfriend. Maybe they read too much into it, but the wolf boy was an sob I thought.

  186. B. Macon 23 Jul 2010 at 10:28 am

    I was dragooned into watching the second film. At least as depicted there, the relationship looked abusive. Moreover, the protagonist pretty much went out of her way to drive away and/or mock the few nice guys she does know. (Because they don’t have washboard abs, I guess).

  187. Wingson 23 Jul 2010 at 11:16 am

    My mother is a Twilight fan. I escaped, so she forced my 11-year-old brother to watch Twilight with her. I believe his exact words were “Wait, they don’t even bite necks?!”. 😉

    – Wings

  188. ShardReaperon 23 Jul 2010 at 11:29 am

    The first thing I gleaned from the movies is that girls will try to kill themselves unless their emotionally-dead, watches-you-sleep boyfriend tries to shelter them from every little thing.

  189. Wingson 23 Jul 2010 at 11:33 am

    I learned that the only worthwhile feature of women is prettiness, and that intelligence and other traits don’t matter because or stalker boyfriends will take care of us anyway.

    And to think a woman wrote this book.

    – Wings

  190. ShardReaperon 23 Jul 2010 at 12:06 pm

    Just look at how far women have come.

  191. Wingson 23 Jul 2010 at 12:52 pm

    Yes, we’ve been reduced to objects of affection for a stalker and a pedophile. Just wonderful. XD

    – Wings

  192. B. Macon 23 Jul 2010 at 4:10 pm

    At least James Bond could hold up a disclaimer like “no women were involved in the making of this film.”

  193. Lighting Manon 23 Jul 2010 at 5:14 pm

    I seriously think that Stephanie Meyers intended to write a horror novel about killer stalker snake-people but got struck by the wrong kind of kryptonite before she got very far in, and switched it to vampires.

    Vampires – Drink blood, murderous, sunlight is deadly, mystically cursed or afflicted with a virus, have personalities.

    Snakes – Slimey + scaly + sun = Shiny! Possess venom, a common folk remedy to which is sucking it out of the wound, as happens at the end of Twilight, cold-blooded (which generally translates to people as meaning immortal, for some reason) and generally regarded as being highly stupid primitive creatures, which describes Edward Cullen as well as anything else. Plus, they make terrible pets, explaining the total lack of personalities.

    By simply hitting control-F and changing “Sna’ku’h’uh’man” in her manuscript to “vampire” She went from being hidden with the rest of the furry fiction or unpublished, to ruining a mythological species and dining with Bill Gates.

  194. B. Macon 23 Jul 2010 at 7:15 pm

    Oh God. Does that mean that Agent Orange is merely a better version of Twilight? Time to hang up the pens. 😀

  195. Wingson 23 Jul 2010 at 8:46 pm

    “This is the skin of a killer, mammal!” *sparkle*

    …Well, there’s one mental image that I didn’t need.

    – Wings

  196. B. Macon 23 Jul 2010 at 9:11 pm

    Maybe that’s why he wears trenchcoats and sunglasses all the time. Because he’s worried about blinding everybody… including himself.

  197. Wingson 23 Jul 2010 at 9:17 pm


    …When your book comes out, I may have to write a The Taxman Must Die fanfiction crossing over with Twilight. Considering Agent orange’s hatred of everything from Canadians to squirrels, I can only imagine how he’d react to Twilight vampires and werewolves- oh, I’m sorry, I forgot she retconned them to be “shapeshifters” in Breaking Dawn. Silly me.

    – Wings

  198. B. Macon 23 Jul 2010 at 11:40 pm

    Georgia Bulldawgs, like werewolves, are that most dreaded kind of creature: the double-mammal. Is it a bull? Is it a dawg? Is it a dog with a dubious sense of spelling?

    Yeah, I could see a lot of things about Twilight that would make Agent Orange surly.
    –One of the evil vampires kills or maims the Native American deputy. This proves that vampires are not merely opposed to law and order, but are also racist.

    –The vampires play baseball, which proves their contempt for better sports, such as everything.

    –The vampires live in Forks because it’s perpetually cloudy, which proves that they despise the Sunshine State and the honorable inhabitants thereof.

    –Bella thinks her dad (the police chief) is a dork, which proves that she too hates law and order. And family values.

    –Bella hates nice guys. In addition, she uses and disposes of Jacob in a remarkably callous fashion.

    –The vampires are (take your pick) pedophiles, stalkers, murderers, blackmailers, kidnappers, baseball fans, abusive lovers, and animal abusers.

    –If their neonatal care is limited to cesarean-by-teeth, we can safely infer that vampire doctors are below par.

    –Every mutant alligator that wears sunglasses can agree that Twilight besmirches every example of true badassery, such as mutant alligators that wear sunglasses.

    –Werewolves are notorious human-haters. Forks has ~10 werewolves and they managed to murder at least one person. In contrast, America’s 3 million alligators kill ~1 person in a typical year. This proves that alligators love humans 300,000 times as much as werewolves do.

    –Although Edward Cullen never explicitly admits he is a Canadian, he never denies it, either. Forks is less than 25 miles away from British Columbia. You do the math.

    –Although Edward Cullen never explicitly admits he is a suicide terrorist, he does attempt to commit suicide to provoke a reaction from a governing body.

    –Although Edward Cullen never explicitly admits he is a Canadian suicide terrorist, his suicidal plot 1) involves public sparkling, 2) is thwarted by a profession of undying love, and 3) is less frightening than the profession of love.

    –The entire Twilight series is obviously a plot to bring the American people to their knees. Incidentally, it was probably more successful than Cullen’s attempted suicide-by-Voltari.

  199. Eric Ellerton 24 Jul 2010 at 7:47 am

    I don’ know if you can get it online, but Kyle Smith does movie reviews for the NY Post and I love his writing because he hates every movies that comes out. He had a really funny colum on the first twilight. Saying things like Edward wasn’t her boyfriend but her ewok she could play in the trees with.

    I don’t know how to put this the right way, but I think there are certain things boys and girls (separately) are drawn to do that they shouldn’t. And when I go into the bookstore in the new age section (for the ufo conspiracy type books) I often notice youn girls, often with their dads, and when they see a book on witchcraft or spells, their eyes light up and they practically climb up the shelves. The boy equivalent (and I;m guessing) would be some type of gratuitous violence I get. My point is that the worst society gets, the more sort of tribal and pagan we get, and very quickly too.

  200. Juneon 07 Aug 2010 at 5:24 pm

    I really liked reading Twilight and loved the movie. Even my husband thought it was a “nice love story” and believe me, he is not the romantic type, so that’s saying something. The edit above is right on without a doubt, but honestly, I never noticed those issues while I was reading the book and apparently neither did a lot of people.

    I guess this is just an example of “rules are meant to be broken” and sometimes it works, in a massive way. I doubt if Stephanie is sweating the criticism. She’s probably enjoying it and secretly waiting to see her critics pull off the huge success she did. It was just her destiny.

  201. B. Macon 07 Aug 2010 at 6:46 pm

    “I doubt if Stephanie is sweating the criticism.” Agreed. I am virtually certain she’s not.

    To be a happy and successful writer, you only need to please yourself, enough readers to sustain you, and (probably) an editor/publisher and agent. After that, I wouldn’t worry about what anybody else thinks.

    However, if you’re not yet satisfied with the outcome, then outside opinions might reveal a lot about why you’re not going as far as you’d like. For example, if you’re not sure why your manuscript has garnered absolutely no interest after 20+ submissions, it probably wouldn’t hurt to ask for a second opinion, preferably from a publishing professional or a published author. No publishing professional or author can speak for the entire publishing industry, but there is a surprising amount of agreement about which submissions fall in the bottom 50% (“not even remotely good enough to publish yet”).

    There’s much less agreement about which .1% are good enough to publish. (I personally would have passed on Twilight and Eragon).

  202. Ericon 25 Aug 2010 at 11:00 am

    My friend claims his son came running to him when he bought him a reissue of fifties pot boiler sci-fi and the premise and even many of the names were the same in the old book and eragon. he claims it’s so lifted he was surprised it was lega.

  203. B. Macon 25 Aug 2010 at 1:58 pm

    Could you ask your friend for the name of the book? I’d like to buy a copy.

  204. Leighon 31 Aug 2010 at 9:28 am

    I couldn’t bring myself to read it all, but you came across as very unbiased and fair. I’d have been attacking the character herself. I love twilight commentary. The real editor was an idiot for risking his career on an unedited book. Eragon at least had plot. Anyone think Meyers knew someone in the biz?

  205. Wingson 31 Aug 2010 at 3:53 pm

    It seems plausible (That’s how Eragon got published), but then again the editor might have just been mentally unsound. 😉

    – Wings

  206. NicKennyon 01 Sep 2010 at 11:14 am

    And where would we be without such people?

  207. Wingson 01 Sep 2010 at 11:19 am

    Well, we wouldn’t be listening to the squeals of thousands and thousands of fangirls as they wait for the first part of Breaking Dawn.

    – Wings

  208. NicKennyon 01 Sep 2010 at 11:23 am

    Yeah. Good point. But how many other great movies would never have been made? Quite a lot.

  209. Ericon 03 Sep 2010 at 8:23 am

    ther’s one seen in the first book where the werewolf dude (sorry, forgot his name for the moment) kisses Bella when she really doesn’t want to be kissed, and there’s no way you could say it wasn’t over the line, but she didn’t seem to react to it the way you would thinik she would, if that makes sense. in other words, he was scary and creepy and she refused to see it.

    I’ve not seen the movies, but it has a great look to it from the clibs and the actress who plays Bella was just born for the movie screen.

  210. B. Macon 03 Sep 2010 at 9:24 am

    I found some of her habits a bit annoying–she avoided eye contact with other characters and twirled her hair repeatedly. But she definitely wasn’t one of the ten worst things about the movie (mercifully, I only saw the second one).

    I don’t know if anybody could have made that balls-to-the-wall-crazy character feel believable, but my suspension of disbelief decidedly failed when she completely went to pieces when her boyfriend left her. (It didn’t help that the character experiences repeated hallucinations of her ex talking to her and begging her to stay safe). The scene where her world starts swirling around her was pretty hilarious. Months pass and she’s wearing the same clothes.

    The movie crossed the line from “dramatically exaggerated breakup” to “you need a therapist” territory within 10 minutes.

  211. Lighting Manon 03 Sep 2010 at 10:44 am

    What’s worse is when it crossed over into “How do so many people share the exact same fetish of being stalked by a corpse that stole the hair on it’s head from Chester A. Arthur after a small whale exploded in the same general area as him?”

    Ironically, the exploding whale did a better job of replicating the human emotion of joy than any of the main cast.

    Something that always kind of bothers me about the movies is the real people actors that are in the movie after having given great performances in other works, and you know that to an entire generation, they will be nothing other than the character in this. Graham Greene is the primary example, he is truly a very talented and amazing actor with a long history and great films to his credit, but he’s going to be getting very large cheques for a very long time and remembered solely as that Native American guy that with smaller pecs than the other ones.

    Which I think might be what it says on said cheques.

  212. Wingson 03 Sep 2010 at 12:03 pm

    At the very least, Robert Patinson has admitted to being in Twilight solely for the money. He also appears to dislike his character.

    “When you read the book, it’s like ‘Edward Cullen is so beautiful I creamed myself.’ I mean, every line was like that. He’s the most ridiculous person who’s so amazing at everything. I think a lot of actors tried to play that aspect. I just couldn’t do that. And the more I read the script, the more I hated this guy, so that’s how I played him, a manic-depressive who hates himself. Plus he’s a 108 year old virgin so he’s obviously got some issues there.” – Robert Pattinson

    (when asked why the series has such mass appeal) “Well, I mean, I think people — there’s a thing about the books where, uh, when I was reading them, I, ugh, I didn’t know how to read it from, you know, teenage g—or any woman’s perspective, I guess. I don’t really know why they like it. But what I thought was weird about it, the, what, the reaction I had with it was…umm…. When I read it, it seemed like (grimaces) I was convinced that…Stephenie was … convinced that she was Bella, and uh, and you, it wasn’t, it was like it was a book that wasn’t supposed to be published, like reading her…her sort of sexual fantasy about some—especially when she says that it was based on a dream, and it’s like, “Oh, then I had a dream about this really sexy guy” and she just writes this book about it, and there’s some things about Edward that are just so specific that it’s like, I was just convinced that, that this woman is mad, she’s completely mad, and she’s in love with her own fictional creation and I—sometimes you, like, feel uncomfortable reading this thing, and I think a lot of people feel the same way, that it’s kind of voyeuristic, ah, and it creates this sick pleasure in a lot of ways. But then it kind of introduces a lot of the, the action elements and it’s very honest and really really honest and that’s kind of what’s weird about it.” – Robert Pattinson

    He’ll be trapped in Edward Cullen’s shadow for the rest of his life. People who liked Twilight will probably typecast him, and people who hate it will probably dismiss him as a proficient actor. Poor guy.

    – Wings

  213. B. Macon 03 Sep 2010 at 12:28 pm

    “Graham Greene is the primary example, he is truly a very talented and amazing actor with a long history and great films to his credit, but he’s going to be getting very large cheques for a very long time and remembered solely as that Native American guy that with smaller pecs than the other ones.” I’m not sure I can forgive him. If Samuel L. Jackson has proven one thing, it’s that being in a Die Hard sequel only excuses so much. And SLJ’s lines in Die Hard With a Vengeance were much better than Greene’s. For example…

    SLJ: So what’s up with this L.A. thing? You famous or something?
    Bruce Willis: Yeah, for about five minutes.
    SLJ: Don’t tell me. Rodney King, right?
    Bruce Willis: F*** you.

  214. Ghoston 03 Sep 2010 at 1:20 pm

    I have to agree with you, Twilight has probably ruined Robert Pattinson’s career. Although, if Zac Efron can get any serious acting gigs after High School Muscial, then I suppose miracles can happen.

  215. Ericon 24 Sep 2010 at 8:13 am

    I saw kristen stewart (Is that the bella actress, i forget at the moment) ANyway, in the bookstore, he cover on the book is all over the place adn she looks lke an old fashioned-hollwood goddess, but I saw her in Into THe Wild (she was a bit younger) but she looked kind of bony and angular, unless it was the lighting and the makeup, you’d wouldn’t think of the character as being as telegenic as she was playing bella.

  216. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 07 Nov 2010 at 4:32 am


    Well, apparently Zac Efron is being considered to play Light Yagami/Kira in a US remake of the Death Note movies. So Efron’s career seems relatively safe (unless the movie bombs, which I kind of expect, not many remakes turn out well), I just hope – for his sake and my sanity – that he can pull off playing a psychotic genocidal genius with a superiority complex and a desire to control everyone around him, if he DOES land the role.




  217. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 07 Nov 2010 at 4:37 am

    “He’ll be trapped in Edward Cullen’s shadow for the rest of his life. People who liked Twilight will probably typecast him, and people who hate it will probably dismiss him as a proficient actor. Poor guy.”

    He’s a good actor, he just got cast in a crappy role. His acting is pretty bad in Twilight, but then he’s only in it for money and if he’s not passionate about the project, I don’t expect him to put much more than the minimal effort it takes to get the cheque.

    I think the majority of Harry Potter fans will remember him as Cedric Diggory, and consider the Edward role as a slump in his career. He’ll be fine, but he’ll probably have to deal with Twihard fangirls going “OMG EDWARD” if they ever see him.

  218. Nicholas Caseon 17 Feb 2011 at 7:15 pm

    I can understand why you don’t like it, but it got published right? I mean, not only published-but it’s own movie saga! Twilight’s okay, but I mean there’s no need to rip on it just because it doesn’t meet your standards. I mean it got published, so what’s the point of making it look bad? I mean we all dream we can hit what Twilight hit am I right? ( I know I do! Seeing Dunimas and his epic cape wavering with his epic sword and his epic hair and his epic…his epic swag and battling it out with Haden and getting his eye gorged out…all on the tv screen…)

  219. Ghoston 17 Feb 2011 at 7:45 pm

    I think B. Mac’s original point in this article is if you are going to do something, do it right. I mean I liked the Eragon series, but everytime I re-read the first book I can’t help but find thing I think could have been done better. I also can help but think about how similar it is to star wars: a new hope. Every time I read the part after saphira spirits young eragon away for the evil emperor’s assassins, I can’t help but think “I’d they traced the droids back to the jawas … That means … Oh no aunt baru and uncle Owen!”
    I do understand your point though. One still should give the author credit for all the hard work they did, and getting published. However in some cases I don’t think that means they, or their editors, couldn’t have put in a little more effort.

  220. Ghoston 17 Feb 2011 at 7:49 pm

    P.S. I would also like to add that I think some of the “mistakes” made by the author in the twilight series are on purpose. I think the author decide to write the story that way to keep the narrative voice consistent with that of a teenage girl.

  221. M123on 25 Feb 2011 at 8:03 am

    I think a lot of you are just a little too eager to edit out Meyer’s work, and will look for any excuse to criticize. I’m not saying that your edits were invalid, or wrong in any way. I’m saying that anyone who has read a broad range of literature would realize that every writer has his own style and writing persona. This is Stephanie’s persona, and given her success, I’d say it’s working out well for her.
    Bella’s voice may be “bland”, and may sound like a “disgruntled English Lit major”, but I personally would be VERY annoyed if she sounded like a fourteen year old girl. If you look into any other teen book, that is exactly what you will find. (And last time I checked she was nearly eighteen) That is not was literature is about. I very rarely read books that feel as if you’re speaking to someone rather than reading a book.
    And the part about her “scenery description”…and how some of is “irrelavant”–she’s not trying to “describe” anything to anyone too much. Which is my theory of why she has had much success. Her words are meant to paint a picture in your mind in a unique way, because quite frankly just telling or describing, whether someone is in a “room” or “hospital” is very boring and people will get easily distracted. She doesn’t always describe things thoroughly because, I believe, she is trying to get you to imgaine the rest of it yourself. Or at the very least, ponder about what every word means, and taking it into consideration for the rest of the story. She is a writer that makes you think, and I’m sorry if some of you can’t handel it.

  222. B. Macon 25 Feb 2011 at 8:31 am

    “She is a writer that makes you think, and I’m sorry if some of you can’t handle it.” Umm, it’s a Fabio romance with vampires. In terms of mental stimulation and/or challenge, I wouldn’t put it within a million miles of Dostoevsky, Jane Austen* or David Wallace.

    In terms of chick lit, pretty much anything written by Meg Cabot* is dramatically sharper. Ella Enchanted* was pretty clever and Ella is much more interesting and independent than Bella. (Notably, the climax hinges on Ella being able to say no to a boyfriend that is amiable and desirable). In terms of vampires, I think Anne Rice* is tolerable, although she sometimes overdoes description.

    *Ack, there goes my street cred. I may need to pull a Zack Whedon, who recorded a song to complain about getting shanghaied into his brother’s musical.

  223. Wingson 25 Feb 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Upon initially reading Twilight (read: with no information as to what the rest of the world thought of it, leaving me without popular opinion on the book to taint my own thoughts), I found it particularly dull. It didn’t interest me at all, and I found the characters bland and boring. I didn’t know why the book was so popular while being so forgettable.

    Then I became acquainted with the Internet, and realized that I wasn’t the only person who felt that way.

    – Wings

  224. Danion 25 Feb 2011 at 6:59 pm

    Meyer’s does not make you think – that is part of her writing style. While the book is written for a younger generation than myself, it does not translate well. Or at all. Take your pick.

    The characters are incredibly boring. There is no growth. The same stuff happens to them over and over and THEY DO NOT LEARN FROM IT! That is the most annoying thing in the world. At least in Cabot’s books* the characters evolve. There is also a good storyline, not just fluff of trying to make it with a vampire. It’s a paranormal teenage romance which is fine for some people but she’s not at all a terrific writer. She just fell into an open genre. Wish I could find one.

    Literature is actually about trying to tell a convincing written story to your audience. She found her audience but it’s not me. Congrats to her.

    And please, don’t ever mention Meyer and Austen in the same sentence. That hurt me a little bit inside.

    * Surprised me for a moment there B.Mac. I thought you had read those books!

  225. B. Macon 25 Feb 2011 at 11:08 pm

    I have. 🙂 (I was researching how female main characters by female authors differ from female MCs by male authors. PS: It feels like every female lead I’m getting from a guy is abnormally smart or traumatized/otherwise developmentally challenged).

    I’ve tweaked my original comment so that it’s a little bit clearer I was being facetious with my footnote.

  226. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 31 Mar 2011 at 2:53 am

    I’m currently sat with my collection of girl-oriented magazines around me, and I’m attempting to find out:

    *How many have photos of Twilight on the cover as the main spread
    *How many have small photos of it on the cover
    *How many reference it or directly mention it on the cover
    *Which magazine mentioned it first, and in which issue (on the cover only – I don’t have time to look on every page of 75 magazines)
    *How many months worth of issues reference it in photos or by word only
    *What the second, third etc runners up are in terms of popularity for cover image/mention

    I’ll write up a report and put my results here when I’m done. It’s gonna be a loooong night.

  227. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 14 Apr 2011 at 11:27 pm

    Title: The Prevalance of Twilight in Magazines Aimed at Teenaged Girls

    Introduction: Twilight is mentioned several times on the covers of my magazine collection. Many have photographs of the cast on the front, or mention it prominently. My hypothesis is that at least a quarter mention it somehow.

    Materials: My materials are a mix of two magazines – Dolly and Girlfriend, published byACP magazines, and Pacific Magazines respectively. My sample size is 74 magazines.

    Method: Go through the 74 magazines and note the following –
    *Who appears on the cover?
    *Is Twilight mentioned on the cover?
    *Does Twilight appear in any secondary images?
    *How many magazines altogether mention/show it?
    *Which are the next most common cover images?


    Eleven have images of Twilight on the cover as the main spread.
    Three have smaller, secondary images on the cover.
    Twenty seven mention it on the cover.

    So if we subtract fourteen from twenty seven (as obviously, the ones with a picture of it on the cover will also mention it), we still have 12 issues with both a picture and a mention. A year of non stop Twilight. O.e In addition, Girlfriend did a special where the reader got a free magazine all about Twilight that numbered two hundred pages – that is almost the length of the actual magazine, so they worked double-time to create it.

    In comparison, the second most common covers featured:
    Four of Taylor Swift (Two of those mentioned Twilight)
    Three of Hayden Panettiere (One mentioned Twilight)
    Three of Hilary Duff
    Two of Emma Watson (and one of those mentioned Twilight on it)
    Two of the Veronicas
    Two of Fergie
    Two of Miley Cyrus

    Conclusion: Twenty seven of the magazines mention it at the very least – over a third. Twilight is evil, and I should die for even owning magazines that mention it.

  228. B. Macon 15 Apr 2011 at 12:28 am

    I found your research very interesting, Whovian! Did these magazines mention any other novels? I think it’d be pretty sad if the only novel that got mentioned in these magazines was one where the protagonist fell in love with a sort of abusive stalker.

  229. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 15 Apr 2011 at 2:33 am

    The magazines mentioned Harry Potter a grand total of twice, on the covers that had Emma Watson on them. Other than that, nothing.

    Don’t get me wrong – the magazines are still informative and useful (I blazed through sex ed in year 10 thanks to them, while my best friend who doesn’t read them struggled a bit more) but I’m sick of the Twilight references.

    For instance, and I am not making this up:

    “Potentially great boyfriends – what you may be overlooking!

    Now, not everybody can meet someone as perfect as Edward Cullen, but some guys can come very close! Here are some types you may not take much notice of.”

    Yes, they refer to a stalking, creepy, sparkly pixie-man as “perfect”. :/

    As if! On the list of “overlooked great boyfriends” are “geeky types”. That’s all I go for, anyway! Like hell I’m overlooking them in pursuit of a pixie! I don’t need to look now anyway, but you get the point.

    Something else – within the pages, towards the back, they sometimes mention some manga. But they get their facts so wrong. One time they called Black Cat a “cute romance”. Um… the main character is an asexual, childish, former assassin bent on revenge against the man who killed his friend… They spell everything wrong, too. They list the creator of Black Cat as Kenta Yaboki. It’s KENTARO YABUKI. Is that so difficult?

    The magazines used to be great, but now they’re filled with Twilight and pathetic attempts to seem cultured. The only thing that is still good are the health sections.

  230. B. Macon 15 Apr 2011 at 4:23 am

    I think magazines in general are sort of brain-dead. Time is probably the perfect example of that–they seem to think their target audience is either mentally damaged or hates reading.

    TIME Announces New Version Of Magazine Aimed At Adults
    Newsweek is arguably even worse. It somehow imagines that it can compete with The Economist. Newsweek, you can’t even compete with Time. Go home!

  231. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 15 Apr 2011 at 4:44 am

    Yeah, magazines are all stupid in some ways. The best magazine I get is this one about different criminal cases – murder, drug running, etc. I read it for research. Anyway, they seem to think readers are morons – “he died of a blood clot – a clot of blood” for example. Even for people who don’t know what a blood clot is, that explanation doesn’t exactly help.

    But the teen magazines are definitely the worst – I think because of their content (makeup, Twilight, guys, makeup, guys, dates, dresses, guys), a lot of people think girls only care about that. Then there’s the “teens-can’t-spell” stereotype – I once got kicked from a site aimed at teenagers because they thought I was an adult, when I was only 14! Jeez.

    Just look at this article about Cosmo – yeah Cosmo’s aimed at adult women, but it’s still stupid trash.


  232. Wingson 15 Apr 2011 at 8:53 am

    And why would I want an Edward Cullen as a boyfriend exactly? If I had to take one, I’d prefer a Mike Newton.

    …Scratch that, I want Tyler’s decepticon-van, which was smart enough to know even when initially thwarted by a sparklypire that it could make one last valiant effort at turning Bella into a mangled pile of flesh. I salute you, Tyler’s van. May you be forever honored in car heaven.

    – Wings

  233. B. Macon 15 Apr 2011 at 12:18 pm

    Also, while we’re on the topic of significant others, Bella is a total trainwreck. She’s psychotically clingy (to the point of recurring hallucinations), she hates all of the nice guys she meets, she shamelessly uses Jacob, sounds like a disgruntled English major, and is utterly incapable of doing anything on her own but dicking with people. On the average guy’s personal scale of desirability, I think she’d rank somewhere between Rosie O’Donnell and an Ebola victim.

    Some people have inferred that Cullen is gay*. If Bella is the best girlfriend he’s been able to find in the past 100 years, that would probably be for the best.

    *If you go a century without having sex, these questions will arise unless you have Pope in your name.

    PS: I read a review that said she watched the Vultari take people away to be murdered and forgot about them by the next chapter. Is that true? (If so, she’s probably a hardcore sociopath).

  234. Wingson 15 Apr 2011 at 12:44 pm

    Apparently there’s an official list of warning signs for sociopathy. Bella got 20 out of 20. Edward himself didn’t.

    …Well, Stephenie Meyer succeeded in creating characters who are made for each other, even if it’s hopefully not what she had in mind.

    – Wings

  235. B. Macon 15 Apr 2011 at 1:44 pm

    “Then there’s the “teens-can’t-spell” stereotype – I once got kicked from a site aimed at teenagers because they thought I was an adult, when I was only 14! Jeez.” Eww.

    I’ve met many teens that can write quite clearly, but on average I think they have more typos than adult authors. I’ve heard a few theories:
    1) It takes experience and practice to get down the mechanics of writing, and generally teens haven’t had as many years of practice.
    2) Writing standards in school tend to be much softer than those in workplaces, so adults will probably be used to higher standards than teens. A term paper with 1-2 typos per page would probably not lose any points for proofreading, but a novel manuscript with 1-2 typos per page would probably get quickly rejected.
    3) People ~25 or younger probably grew up with spellcheckers (at least I did) and might not have had as much incentive to figure out the rules of spelling on their own. Also, there are many situations where spellcheckers are not very helpful (such as “your” vs. “you’re”).

  236. steton 15 Apr 2011 at 2:08 pm

    I loved that Onion piece, B–thanks.

    As a piece of craft, Twilight is also a piece of crap. But nobody reads it for the writing, people read it for story and character.

    It seems reactionary to me (as well as giving a pass to a pederast, which isn’t exactly something I’m comfortable with; I’m about six decades younger than Edward Cullen, and women in their *20s* are way too young for me. I’m about as likely to fall in love with a teenager as I am to try for a second career as a professional ballerina), with troubling messages about gender and sex and love.

    But fuck it. I’m old. The vast majority of teenagers (not anyone here, of course) are *supposed* to like shit that I hate. And it’s fantasy. It’s wish-fulfillment. It’s ‘I’m a clumsy girl struggling with a serious personality-deficit-syndrome, and all the boys love me, and this one boy is superstrong and superhandsome and he’s so heart-poundingly dangerous that he doesn’t even want to have sex with me!’

    Fair enough. Would the book have appealed as much to the people who love it if it’d been well-crafted? I suspect not. I suspect that the writer’s craft would’ve interfered with that message. That’s pretty common. Twilight gets slammed because the readers are (largely) teenaged girls, and teenaged girls are (largely) idiots. But it’s no worse, and certainly a damn sight more innovative, than the crap my 68-year-old father-in-law reads, like Clive Cussler and Vince Flynn, and all the other conservative tough-guy shooting-swarthy-terrorists and getting-laid novels.

    If you dressed one of those up with actual literary merit, my father-in-law would hate it.

  237. B. Macon 15 Apr 2011 at 2:51 pm

    “But it’s no worse, and certainly a damn sight more innovative, than the crap my 68-year-old father-in-law reads, like Clive Cussler and Vince Flynn, and all the other conservative tough-guy shooting-swarthy-terrorists and getting-laid novels.” Fortunately, the success of such books bodes well for the success of my upcoming autobiography, Be Macking.

    Semi-seriously, I would hold out Point of Impact as one of the best-written action novels I’ve read. And Day of the Jackal, if you consider that action. Neither one is written for literary acclaim, but I wouldn’t be embarrassed to read either in public. Who knows, maybe even your father-in-law would like it.

  238. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 15 Apr 2011 at 7:47 pm

    “People ~25 or younger probably grew up with spellcheckers (I did!) and might not have had as much incentive to figure out the rules of spelling on their own. Also, there are many situations where spellcheckers are not very helpful (such as “your” vs. “you’re”).”

    When I first started writing, I didn’t have Word or anything so I couldn’t really rely on spellcheckers. We just had this old computer, second hand, and it couldn’t do much at all so I just had fun writing. Yeah, all of it sucked, but my spelling was pretty decent for a ten year old without a spellchecker to rely on. I used to Google words to check them, that or consult my parents or the dictionary.

    My writing still sucked though. Mary Sues and medical inaccuracy galore! (So kinda like Grey’s Anatomy then… 😉 )

    I’m trying not to edit as I go now – leaving it til I’m done. But it physically hurts me to see how bad my mistakes can get. When I was in school, and our assignments required a draft, I usually just wrote my best copy, altered the sentences a little, and then went back and messed it up to serve as a “draft” because I couldn’t stand the initial imperfection. At least that way I knew it was deliberate.

  239. Wingson 16 Apr 2011 at 6:32 pm

    When it comes to spelling, I find it to be both a major weakness and a major strength for me: Give me a word and a pencil, and I’m 95% sure I can spell it right, but if I don’t get the pencil then I’ll just look at you confusedly. It seems I can only spell a word aloud if I write it down first…which means I technically don’t know it unless I write it down first. Paradoxial.

    – Wings

  240. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 16 Apr 2011 at 8:14 pm

    “I can only spell a word aloud if I write it down first…which means I technically don’t know it unless I write it down first.”

    That happens to me sometimes, but most of the time I can handle it okay. It just takes me a bit longer to remember.

    My greatest high school achievement was getting a perfect score on the spelling tests in year eight. 🙂 I remember this one word nobody spelled right, except for me. The word? Squall. I learned how to spell that by playing Kingdom Hearts, because there’s a character who goes by “Leon”, but his friend Yuffie points out that his real name is Squall. Who says games don’t teach you anything? 😉

  241. ekimmakon 16 Apr 2011 at 8:54 pm

    Not me. Age of Mythology taught me how to touchtype.

    Unfortunately, that’s because I learnt how to type out the cheat codes really fast, so it may not be the best example.

  242. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 16 Apr 2011 at 9:15 pm

    Years of practice taught me to type and read fast. Since I began writing when I was ten, my typing got extremely fast, and since I started reading fanfic, my reading sped up too.

    I have two laptops – an old one that is almost useless, and a newer one. One day, my friend and I were each using one to read the same manga at our own paces. She was a chapter ahead of me at the start, but when I finished, she still had two chapters to go. ^_^;

    I’ve embarrassed myself at school a few times when asked to read aloud – I speak as fast as I can read it, and I didn’t realise until everybody stared at me. I also tend to speak too loud without realising, especially when I’m excited about the topic. But I guess it’s just the way I am and I’d rather be me than be normal. 😉

  243. ekimmakon 16 Apr 2011 at 9:38 pm

    “But I guess it’s just the way I am and I’d rather be me than be normal.”
    I like that line. Can I use it for one of my characters?

  244. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 17 Apr 2011 at 12:21 am

    Yeah, sure, go ahead. YAY! I’m quotable! 😉

  245. ekimmakon 17 Apr 2011 at 12:39 am

    Don’t be too pleased. The character I’m thinking of believes that “bad idea” means “go ahead”, gets escorted from buildings for using the stairwell as a skate ramp, doesn’t understand that spreading rumours about the libby will have negative consequences.

  246. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 17 Apr 2011 at 1:04 am

    Haha, sounds good to me! 😀

  247. Crystalon 01 May 2011 at 3:47 pm

    I read a lot of books, and, from what I read, this sounds about average. Not as bad as people make it sound, but not great, either.
    Just from those first few pages, I think that this would become the kind of book that’s okay in the beginning, but gets confusing somewhere later in the story.

  248. Cypresson 10 Dec 2011 at 10:40 am

    I just saw the pictures of twilight tattoos and almost cried. It was so sad. Also that trailer spoof that was posted a while ago by The ReTARDISed Whovian, I wish that was made into a movie. It was amazing!

    So I admit that when I was a young naive little child, I was a twilight fan. I look back on it now and am ashamed. So, so ashamed.

    I went back and reread the twilight series and I realized how creepy stalker Edward is, and how pathetic Bella is. So sad. When people go on about twilight and I say that I don’t like the books they all look at me like I’m crazy or start going on about how wonderful it is. One of my favorite things to say back is something along the lines of this.

    In either the second or third book Bella says something along the lines of “Jacob is my sunshine, and Edward is my heroine. I’m going to chose Edward.” How much more info do people need before they realize it’s an abusive relationship. I mean really he watches her as she sleeps, he keeps her from her friends, he tells her what to do. Come on people wake up!

    And about the reading out loud thing from The ReTARDISed Whovian, I’m exactly the same. My teacher, friends, and family always complain about that. When I was reading some Edgar Allen Poe to my friends on Halloween in a partly built house. (yah fun!) I had to concentrate so hard on not reading quickly. That and I love your “But I guess it’s just the way I am and I’d rather be me than normal.”

  249. Carl Shinyamaon 28 Mar 2012 at 7:57 pm

    Since I discovered this site only a few weeks ago, I realize that I am very late to the party. That said, I’ll add my two cents.

    I didn’t read all the comments, so if I repeat anyone’s thoughts, I apologize ahead of time.

    The wearing-a-sleeveless white lace shirt/parka-is-the-only-thing-she-packed bit was done to show that she is moving from a warm place with lots of sunshine to a place where it constantly rains. Having lived in the state of Washington for half of my life, I picked up on that pretty easily, and it didn’t hurt that I studied fashion design for three years, in which I learned that women often hint, imply, and/or convey what’s relevant or significant in their lives according to their wardrobe, so I was able to easily tell the significance of that part. However, not everybody grew up in Washington, and not every guy has studied fashion design, so I can easily understand how it might appear insignificant.

    The preface:

    What I liked is that Meyer grabs us with the prospect of the protagonist’s death. That’s a good way to

    What I didn’t like was her use of the term, “hunter”. Without reading the synopsis on the back of the book, I honestly would have thought of either an outdoorsman, a serial killer, or perhaps some creepy stalker. Be specific, I want to be able to clearly picture the characters in my mind.

    Honestly, I almost put the book down after the first few pages. Regrettably, I didn’t. Here’s why:

    – Books that throw the “best seller” tag around a lot tend to scare me away. While there are some truly terrific books that warrant their high sales, this highly abused form advertising tends to be a mask for substandard books. After Harry Potter, I felt like more quality books were likely going to on the best sellers shelves, so after all the acclaim Twilight got, I gave it a shot.

    – Growing up, I read a lot of books (all kinds of them, excellent ones from “Sleepers” to “Nothing to Fear” to “Flowers in the Attic” to “Damia”). So I had a lot of experience with books that didn’t exactly have strong starts, but finished rather strongly, so I thought I’d give Twilight an honest chance.

    After I read it, I was left extremely underwhelmed. The things that bothered me about the book is that there was no sense of urgency to the plot; it just flat out plodded along, Bella’s reasons for dating Edward were superficial ones, poor character portrayal (honestly, Bella came off as extremely shallow) and development, and a highly anti-climatic climax.

    After I read it, I gave it away. I never read any of the other books, and I never went to see any of the movies.

    What I find incredibly baffling is the amount of people who find Twilight to be original. It’s not. Not even close. Published a few years earlier, “Demon in My View” by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes, has a HIGHLY similar premise – socially incompatible high school female identifies better with vampires than humans and falls in love with a good looking vampire who attends her school – with a far better execution of the story. I resent the commercial success of Twilight when Demon in My View was a superior book.

  250. B. McKenzieon 28 Mar 2012 at 8:12 pm

    “Published a few years earlier, “Demon in My View” by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes, has a HIGHLY similar premise – socially incompatible high school female identifies better with vampires than humans and falls in love with a good looking vampire who attends her school – with a far better execution of the story.” I also see a few comparisons between Twilight and Hunger Games. Like Twilight, the protagonist of Hunger Games is a teenager going through a love triangle driven by supernatural events. Thankfully, the comparisons between the loathsomely boring Bella and the significantly more interesting Kat end there. In particular, I really appreciate how much the love triangle is driven by the characters’ flaws (notably, Kat’s initial willingness to take advantage of the Nice Guy because she’d probably get killed otherwise). In contrast, it appears that the major consideration for Bella is, ahem, how cute the beau is?

    Also, I think guys especially will appreciate that the romance arc is mostly relevant to the main plot (Kat trying to survive long enough to overthrow the evil empire), but the series is not a romance. Not coincidentally, the audience of the first Hunger Games movie was 40% male, compared to 20% for Twilight.

    (Incidentally, I recommend the books over the movie(s) because, so far, the political intrigue was significantly more interesting in the books than the movie. The movie resembled The Running Man/Rollerball/Battle Royale and other dystopian reality-TV stories a bit too much).

  251. Carl Shinyamaon 28 Mar 2012 at 8:19 pm

    That’s a good way to start a story*

  252. Carl Shinyamaon 28 Mar 2012 at 8:21 pm

    I haven’t read Hunger Games, but after watching the movie, now I want to. I’m very curious to see what happens afterwards [I’m assuming that there is/are going to be [a] sequel(s)].

  253. YoungAuthoron 28 Mar 2012 at 8:31 pm

    I seriously recommend the Hunger games. great movie and a great book.

  254. B. McKenzieon 28 Mar 2012 at 9:51 pm

    “I’m very curious to see what happens afterwards [I’m assuming that there is/are going to be [a] sequel(s)].” I would assume that a sequel is a lock. “…the big screen adaptation of [Hunger Games] opened to an enormous $152.5 million, which ranks third all-time behind Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 ($169.2 million) and The Dark Knight ($158.4 million). Remarkably, it debuted above all of the Twilight movies, and it also topped Alice in Wonderland ($116.1 million) for highest debut ever for a non-sequel.”

    Some other interesting data:
    –The movie audience was 40% male (compared to 20% for the last Twilight movie)–not surprising. The ratio of killing:kissing was amenable to action fans.

    –56% of viewers were 25 or older. That’s counterintuitive for a movie based on a young adult novel with a teen protagonist, but the main character is outlandishly mature (even in comparison to most of the adults in the series). I can’t think of anything the main character does that is distinctively teen rather than adult and can only identify one way that the story would change if she were 25 rather than ~17–her romance might play out a bit differently if she had had more dating experience. (One reason she’s not sure about how real her romance is because she’s never had one before). But HG completely avoided all of the problems that tend to annoy me most about most teen characters (e.g. low-stakes social jockeying, a tendency towards whininess/wangst, dull parents/siblings, extremely superficial relationships with lovers and antagonists, difficulty affecting the plot as much as a character with more authority, etc). Huge kudos.

    –The marketing on this was real sharp. For example, this HG trailer did a great job of laying out what was at stake and what the movie was about. HG’s marketers weren’t afraid of the unusual premise. In contrast, John Carter’s marketers were so afraid of the story being set on Mars that they bent over backwards to hide it and the trailer did not make any sense. (Wait, WHY is this guy in an arena with white ape things? WTF?)

  255. Carl Shinyamaon 28 Mar 2012 at 10:47 pm

    “The marketing on this was real sharp. For example, this HG trailer did a great job of laying out what was at stake and what the movie was about. HG’s marketers weren’t afraid of the unusual premise. In contrast, John Carter’s marketers were so afraid of the story being set on Mars that they bent over backwards to hide it and the trailer did not make any sense. (Wait, WHY is this guy in an arena with white ape things? WTF?)”

    I agree. My personal experience reflects your observations. Though I went and saw it anyway, when I saw the John Carter trailer, my interest was initially lukewarm because they did not highlight what made the movie stand out what it was about. However, when I saw the trailer for the Hunger Games, I wanted to see it immediately for exactly the reason you noted: They laid out what was at stake and what the movie was about.

    I saw this the other day, and I thought the John Carter trailer should have been laid out more like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OzPVYy7LHIo

  256. Nightwireon 28 Mar 2012 at 11:27 pm

    Too bad John Carter was such a box office flop. I saw it the other day, and I think it’s a pretty good and enjoyable movie. And the visual effects are stunning!

    I so want to punch whoever did the marketing job for John Carter.

  257. B. McKenzieon 29 Mar 2012 at 2:27 am

    “I think it’s a pretty good and enjoyable movie. And the visual effects are stunning!” It got 51% on Rotten Tomatoes. Granted, this movie is not an easy marketing job because of the genre-bending (sci-fi with fantasy trappings), but I would still pin this disaster mainly on the marketers (and/or whoever made the marketing strategy). Especially if your marketing team has a budget of tens of millions of dollars, you must be able to sell a decent product. Mat Nastos’ cynicism is rubbing off on me–even on major projects at large companies, a lot of marketers just aren’t very good.

    Secondarily, I’d also question the decision to spend $250 million producing a franchise movie from a franchise that probably doesn’t have a vast contemporary following. If John Carter were actually a household name, naming the movie John Carter might not have been disastrous. I certainly would not recommend spending $250 million on a movie unless you’re sold on the premise and are confident that you can sell readers on the premise. (One of the issues was that Disney’s team was nervous about the Martian setting because most of the recent movies set on Mars have not sold very well*).

    *Anecdotally, I think that an extraterrestrial setting is not necessarily a liability. For example, Avatar and Star Wars hit the mother-lode even though they were set on planets besides Earth. All other things being equal, I can’t think of any reason that customers would be much more wary of Mars than, say, Tatooine. If the Martian setting were actually the main issue, Disney could have tweaked the source material to have the story take place on a reddish, fictional planet named Barsoom and never mentioned Mars in-story.

    However, all other things were NOT equal: Avatar and Star Wars consistently looked like sci-fi, NOT like Conan the Barbarian in space. I think that incongruency was visually jarring and made the main character look cheesy in a movie that had a lavish budget. (Would it have been a gross violation of the source material to give the main character a simple outfit, perhaps something like what Luke Skywalker wore?)

  258. B. McKenzieon 29 Mar 2012 at 2:54 am

    “I saw this the other day, and I thought the John Carter trailer should have been laid out more like this:

    Although I think it covers one major gap (showing us right away that he’s a cavalryman transported to Mars), I feel this trailer could still do a better job giving us more information about what’s going on. For example, I think it could do a lot more in the way of developing the romance, developing the villain(s), developing major plot points, etc. In particular, I’d like to contrast the romance in the above John Carter fan trailer with the romance shown in the Hunger Games trailer. HG shows us the single biggest obstacle to its main romance: both love interests are trapped into a game where at most one is allowed to survive. That’s interesting and fresh! I wish the John Carter trailer pulled off that sort of vibe.

  259. Nightwireon 29 Mar 2012 at 7:08 am

    “Avatar and Star Wars consistently looked like sci-fi, NOT like Conan the Barbarian in space.”

    I think Star Wars is more like High Fantasy in a science fiction setting. You know, space monks with crazy space magic and what not. 😛

    That is, until George Lucas introduced the Midi-chlorians… Gah.

  260. B. McKenzieon 29 Mar 2012 at 1:18 pm

    “I think Star Wars is more like High Fantasy in a science fiction setting. You know, space monks with crazy space magic and what not.” There are some fantasy elements to Star Wars (mainly the Force), but it doesn’t look like a fantasy. That helps the marketers make a more coherent pitch–they didn’t mention anything about fantasy in the trailers, but they repeatedly reminded viewers it’s sci-fi.

    (“in space… a big, sprawling space saga… a spectacle light-years ahead of its time… aliens from 1000 worlds…”, at least 5 different shots of spaceships, the title is Star Wars, etc). The marketers present it coherently as a sci-fi adventure with some romance. In contrast, marketers can’t avoid showing that John Carter dresses like he’s in a fantasy, which raises questions about what the genre is (and cheesiness concerns).

    I’m not familiar with these Midi-chlorians of which you speak. Perhaps they were a repressed memory or a bad dream? 🙂

  261. Zoeon 31 Mar 2012 at 1:39 pm

    At one point, I wanted to see what the fuss was about with Twilight. I grabbed the book off of my friend’s shelf, and it is safe to say that I didn’t make it beyond page two. I felt like I had read something that a computer had barfed onto a page. You couldn’t pay me enough money to read Twilight.

    I’m glad that I’m not the only one who sees Twilight for what it really is: Crap.

  262. aharrison 16 Jun 2012 at 1:39 pm

    So, I’m getting that the girl in the passage is throwing a hissy-fir because of her mom’s new boyfriend and moving to be with her father not because she wants but because she’s punishing her mother in a fit of adolescent pique?

    Yeah, I agree that could have been done much better. There’s not enough meat on the bones to demonstrate that adequately.

  263. Karaon 24 Jun 2012 at 7:58 am

    This is a great first edit.
    I think if Meyers had paid attention to the edits, and had actually gone back to re-write some parts of the story, the book would be far better.

  264. The Teenon 24 Jun 2012 at 9:56 pm

    I think the point of the whole book wasnt meant for people who over analyze it…it was meant for TEENAGERS who wanted a guy in a book that was perfect.
    For your critiques:
    You can’t come at it with a thought of “book-editor” to READ a book…that’s probably why you didn’t like it. Even though you may not have wanted to you don’t understand why this book did as well as it did, and you probably don’t like the whole teen drama thing in the first place. Nor do you like cliches, and this book is one of the biggest ones.
    I’ve always hated prefaces so…yeah I only just now read this one. Again, I think it was overly dramatic and talkative because it was made for teens and (me, as a teen) would have been intrigued. And if you have read the books Bella isn’t one to SHOW her feelings. Plus she WAS terrified but she had already accepted her fate and was already facing her supposed killer while this was happening so she wouldn’t have had much body language. Bella also (if you read the book) doesn’t behave as other ‘humans’ would.
    CH 1
    I agree with you on the run-on, but I think (for teen girls) we would like and relate to the random stopping and starting. And if on the first page you have just one huge paragraph teens almost automatically put the book down. Bella is SUPPOSED to sound older than a regular teen, not older…but smarter? She’s has to keep up with Edward who is over 100 year old and has a rather large vocabulary. As for the Bella going to Forks, well that’s the main point! If you had had some patience and let the woman get on with the story you would have read the why’s. You can’t just give up EVERYTHING to the reader on the first two pages. You have to have some mystery. And plus most books that are worth reading you have to kinda get past the first chapter to get to the good stuff. The “chatting” as you so call it is the author showing the NON VERBOSE side. It shows there that Bella ISN’T verbose when it comes to talking! In your mind you have thoughts!! duh, you can’t help that now can you? As for the ‘but’ if you read into it you can see that the mother promises to come home BUT Belle can see the sacrifice behind the promise. When she says ‘urged’, it’s showing Bella is the adult in the situation, ‘urged’ has more flavor, just MORE to it that said. The part about flying I thinking it was to show the contrast in the 4 hour flight compared to the 1 hour drive. Back to the verbose rambling thing, it also show that Bella is a thinker! But again not verbose. I think the part about the clothes, well again to a teen it stood out to me cause she only had ONE suitcase when she was going to live there! (i don’t know how she did it…) TO the whole end paragraph, it needed to show the awkward-ness of it all! That’s was the point of the conversation.

    Now I know I’ve said a lot and didn’t reply to everything, but all of the people I have read criticizing this book when they are probably adults onto bigger and better writing, and I get that, but for teenage GIRLS this book is perfect. I am in no way shape or form a Twi-Hard although from the this paragraph I would understand why you might think so – ha. But I thought SOMEONE should adequately defend this book. You may not like it cause it’s not your style, but Stephenie obviously did something right.

    k bye

  265. Janon 27 Jun 2012 at 10:07 am

    Myer describes Edward & Co [whose names I didn’t bother to learn; they all act the same anyway] as ‘completely gorgeous’ and all ‘like supermodels’ and clothes that were designer, but ‘they could have been wearing rags and still be beautiful’.
    It was at this point that I stopped reading and vowed never to again, no matter how bored I got in study hall.

  266. Frankieon 30 Jun 2012 at 11:02 am

    Stephenie Meyer’s writing style is a joke.

    About the dialogue, though– I’m not the kind to say ‘write dialogue exactly as people talk’, because people ramble, switch topics without warning, make awkward grammatical errors, etc., and writing those things in looks unprofessional. But I will say that advising people to remove every single redundancy, verbal tic, or idiosyncrasy can make characters sound like robots.

    I find it’s always much easier to give characters a distinct voice if you relax your rules when writing dialogue. And as I prefer a very minimalistic writing voice (when I’m not writing chatty comments!), I’ve found it also helps to keep my writing from sounding too beige.

    ‘The Teen’, I don’t think ‘verbose’ means what you think it means. (But as it means ‘expressing a concept in more words than are necessary’, yes, I would have to say that Bella’s inner monologue is extremely verbose.)

    Using words you got from right-click-thesaurus doesn’t make you or the character sound clever. It makes you sound try-hard. In fact, it makes you sound less clever. If you are going for an extremely specific meaning then long words might be necessary, but if there was a simpler word you could have used, it just alienates the reader and breaks suspension of disbelief.

    The best way to make characters sound clever is to show them being clever. Show them being witty, quick-thinking, and making wise decisions. Using long words instead of writing good characters doesn’t fool anyone.

    As far as I can think (and I have read all the books), I can’t think of one single time where Bella was witty, quick-thinking, or made good decisions, and sure enough, she can use all the ‘verbose’ and ‘omnipresent’ she likes, but I still think of her as pretty stupid.

    On the other hand, a really excellent example of how to write this trait well is Bartimaeus from ‘The Bartimaeus Trilogy’. His dialogue and narration are very simply written and colloquial, but the reader knows he’s clever– it’s his sharp sense of humour and his ability to get out of trouble by thinking fast that gets the point across. There’s no need for him to use long words.

  267. WritingNinjaon 30 Aug 2012 at 9:09 pm

    I don’t like twilight. But Honestly, it was a good idea. It just wasn’t carried out to my liking. I like to read romance books now and then. They don’t always carry a heavy plot to them compared to superhero, spy, action adventure movies. Why? It’s a romance. There’s only so much drama you can pump into it without it falling into pieces. In Twilight I think if both characters did not have emotional issues, then the romance would have failed.
    I think it’s just a lot of fantasies tossed together in a book for people to enjoy at once. I’m all for the super girl, save her own self, kick butt character. But even then it is nice to get a break and let a guy come in and save her. It’s a nice thought that someone loves you a lot. Granted he stalks her, that’s pretty darn creepy. But in the world of writing, he isn’t suppose to be creepy, he would never hurt her in creepy ways.

    I guess it’s that uncontrolled-controlled power thing.
    Kinda like Ironman. I loved that movie so much. Tony Stark is an awesome character! But I would never date a guy like that. He’s dysfunctional, controlling, manipulative, and lacks communication skills. Yet he is a superhero! Edward is a vampire, an emotional mess, yet he deeply loves Belle and is a hero!

  268. Agnion 03 Oct 2012 at 7:24 am

    I have not read ‘Twillight’ but have seen the movie. Kirsten stewart’s acting was so pathetic. Same depressed expression in all situations. Basically its a movie for girls and those girl souls residing in boys’ bodies.

  269. B. McKenzieon 03 Oct 2012 at 8:27 am

    “Basically it’s a movie for girls and those girl souls residing in boys’ bodies.” I suspect most of the guys in the audience were there with girlfriends.

  270. Agnion 03 Oct 2012 at 9:36 am

    I have met some boys who like twillight. One of my friends likes, oh sorry, loves twillight who has a pink cellphone. Can you believe it? A boy with a pink coloured cell phone!

  271. B. McKenzieon 03 Oct 2012 at 7:16 pm

    There’s no accounting for taste. I really liked Batman & Robin when it came out, so I try not to hold other people’s preferences against them. That said, I am somewhat perplexed about what a guy might see in Twilight. It strikes me as softcore for ladies, but there are male-oriented stories which cover wish-fulfillment in a much, much more interesting way. (For example, Iron Man and Casino Royale do much more with character development and wit/humor).

  272. Melendineon 01 Dec 2012 at 3:59 am

    As a fan of the Twilight Saga my defense of it is that Twilight was written for fun. It was the over-arching themes that the writer wanted to convey. How she wrote it became irrelevant to those of us who love the universe and the premise. It is almost like chocolate. It may not be Lindt or Thorntons but it makes up for it by being orange and mint flavoured. I’m currently studying English and the novels/ plays we have to study such as Animal Farm, An Inspector Calls and Of Mice and Men are “very well written.” But most people don’t care about the use of a synonym 3 times in 1 act to signify that the author is using a character to cut down another character’s views.
    Pure fiction is not meant to be analysed. It is meant to entrap the readers in a story.
    With Twilight’s massive fan base I can state with confidence that it has a succeeded in its job as a fictional story.

  273. Scarletton 01 Dec 2012 at 6:25 am

    Melendine, what overarching themes are you talking about? Twilight is poorly written, has absolutley no plot, and teaches girls that if you do not have a creepy, obsessive boyfriend, then your life is worthless. I do not understand how anyone could think this is “fun.”

  274. YellowJujuon 01 Dec 2012 at 10:22 am

    It also teaches young girls that if a very old man tells you he wants to kill you, you should date him anyway.

  275. Dr. Vo Spaderon 01 Dec 2012 at 10:35 am

    Interesting take, Meledine. I prefer vampire media more like Underworld. Granted there wasn’t a whole lot to it, but Twilight was more about a love triangle than vampirism or werewolves. (My Underworld affection only lightly extends to the third installment. Haven’t seen the latest.) There’s an interesting demotivational on the subject Twilight romance 🙂

  276. Derp Writeron 01 Dec 2012 at 11:59 am

    Well, ReTARDISed, fortunately for me, as an Anti-Twilight advocate (advocate of Anti-Twilightism?) I’m 6’4″, so I don’t have to be careful about speaking my mind on the subject of there being no way in Hell that even all of the great authors throughout history could rewrite Twilight (at least while staying true to the very stupid plot) to be a good story.

  277. The Milky Wayon 01 Dec 2012 at 5:21 pm

    ” It also teaches young girls that if a very old man tells you he wants to kill you, you should date him anyway. ”

    YellowJuju. You made my day with that comment! Haha.

    The sad thing is that if you ask me, Twilight had some real potential. The only things Stephenie Meyer needed to make it a decent read was:

    1.) Writing lessons. ( Particularly on plot development, character development and letting a thesaurus be a decoration on your desk instead of using it. )

    2.) A better, more accurate idea of what high school life is like instead of what happened to Bella Swan.

    3.) More studying on other mythological creatures would’ve better enhanced the idea of vampires, no?

    4.) Time. If J.K Rowling took almost twenty years for the Harry Potter series, I think Meyer can do close to three or four years for the first two novels. It’s like aging cheese. The longer and older the better.

    5.) An atlas, along with a clock showing the time zones. I’m sorry, but if she can bend time to her will and get Bella going to Italy in about a day, then it shows a little bit of research can go a long way.

    6.) Research! That’s what makes a book even better. Heck, three or four seconds on Google wouldn’t destroy anyone, wouldn’t it?

    Now, know this. These are just what I think she could’ve improved on. Dunno if I’m wrong in some areas. I’ve got many more haha, but this is just what I thought.

  278. Raya Callenon 01 Jan 2013 at 4:15 pm

    I’ve enjoyed many books that are written similar to our average ‘broken thought’ process. People do not usually think in complete sentences, there is always an addition, or a delay of feelings and emotions. I loved the way Stephanie described Belle’s thoughts, and the things that were bringing out the characters feelings during the story. Besides, we all know she (Stephanie – author of Twilight), does not consider herself as a great ‘writer’, but as a great ‘story teller’…and she is. So pencil in whatever you’d like. It will never dent her success, only make you seem bitter. Have a nice day!

  279. B. McKenzieon 01 Jan 2013 at 5:20 pm

    Hello, Raya. Like almost any other professional workplace, publishers have various professionals in place to help evaluate and improve the work of others. For example, if your coworker shares ideas with you about how to work more effectively or your boss enforces workplace rules, does that make them bitter? If you think so, I would recommend reevaluating your professional approach. Having briefly worked on both ends of the editorial process, I find that it has helped me improve my writing skills immensely.

    If you were making your own publisher, would it have editors? What would they do?

    “Have a nice day!” Thanks, you too.

  280. Dr. Vo Spaderon 01 Jan 2013 at 5:59 pm

    @B. Mac,

    Clever. Assholism denied.

    @Any and Everyone,

    “Twilight” is simply an undefendable mess. However there is one lesson that can be taken positively from the books (and films) – human ingenuity. The ability of a person to take something that is nothing and make money off it.

    Cheers, Ms. Stephanie.

  281. B. McKenzieon 01 Jan 2013 at 6:35 pm

    “Clever. Assholism denied.” Thanks, but I don’t think Raya was being an asshole. I just don’t think he/she thought all that about my editorial suggestions beyond “I liked this book very much–how dare you suggest changes?” (It’s obvious she’s never worked with an editor, for one thing).

  282. Dr. Vo Spaderon 01 Jan 2013 at 7:12 pm

    Ack. I was refering to the sarcastic “Have a nice day!”. I hear that so often it makes my hair stand to see it anywhere.

  283. B. McKenzieon 02 Jan 2013 at 6:02 am

    Okay, fair. “You seem bitter… Have a nice day!” was sort of passive-aggressive. Still, in the publishing industry, that’s a step up from aggressive-aggressive or socially dysfunctional-aggressive or jaded-aggressive.

  284. Xos Melon 02 Jun 2013 at 12:43 pm

    I’m trying to decide if this series should have just shriveled and died, or if it’s better it was published.

    I know a young woman who, after reading Twilight, started writing a pretty epic story about vampires and the undead. It might redeem vampires.

  285. Editing Eragon | Life of a Young Writeron 11 Jun 2013 at 1:11 pm

    […] can read Brian’s edit of Twilight here. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like […]

  286. Jenna Nealon 22 Jan 2014 at 2:14 pm

    I am curious if you actually read the entire book? I mean a lot the questions you ask are answered. Plus you mention there is no reason to go on about the flights but I am curious if you read the entire book did you capture in on the complete circle she makes by the end. Also I find it interesting how much passion this book creates. People love to talk about Twilight because they love it without question. Then there are those who hate it but love to announce that they hate it. I am fascinated by this.

    I love this site and the enormous fan base you carry. I am however curious though for everyone who does hate Twilight do they at least see why it’s brilliant and why those who love it… Love it? In other words it is not about the style of her writing which there is always one rule crusher who is successful but she captured exactly what every girl wants. Say it isn’t so but it’s why it’s world wide a top saga and we can’t put it down. Edward listens. Edward is respectable. Sure it has its flaws but interesting how a book that could be edited so much is loved by so many flaws and all. Personally I love JK Rowling because I agree that this isn’t a story you’d want to read to understand show vs tell but she figured out her characters enough to make people love them so much they name their children after them. Thanks! I really like the site. I am even more fascinated by your fans and the comments. Maybe one day you can say you helped someone famous.

  287. B. McKenzieon 22 Jan 2014 at 11:17 pm

    “I love this site and the enormous fan base you carry.” Thanks! It’s actually a smallish website, though — a million readers, give or take.

    “Maybe one day you can say you helped someone famous.” If we’re REALLY stretching on “helped,” I wrote a speech for the head of the EPA. I doubt she’d be able to pick me out of a police lineup, though. Personally, I find personal interaction more rewarding.

    “I am curious if you actually read the entire book?” No. Most manuscripts are rejected within the first 3 pages, so I felt comfortable doing this post based on just 3 pages. If the PA is unable to make sense of the story as he/she is reading it, it doesn’t matter whether you explain it later because the story will probably get axed well before then.

    “I am however curious though for everyone who does hate Twilight do they at least see why it’s brilliant and why those who love it… Love it?” I believe it’s like a Disney princess movie for an older audience*. The core appeal of princess movies (and, I believe, Twilight) is that it’s wish-fulfillment for ladies, whereas the closest analogue for guys would probably be superhero stories or maybe cops and spies.

    I’m a biased observer here, obviously, but I’d feel embarrassed greenlighting a superhero story with writing this bland. (The five Twilight movies averaged 41% on Rotten Tomatoes, which would have been ugly bordering on disastrous for a superhero movie. Superhero movies under 50% tend to bomb at the box office — Hancock is the only exception I can think of. In comparison, the average superhero movie since 2000 scored 56% and the 17 superhero movies which beat $200 million in U.S. tickets averaged 78%).

    *In all seriousness, this is uncharitable to Disney princess movies. They also do better than 41% on Rotten Tomatoes.

  288. Amber Don 24 Jan 2014 at 12:41 am

    What does rotten tomatoes base percentages off of and why would a score under 50% for a superhero movie mean it’s probaly unsuccessful but not for twilight?

  289. B. McKenzieon 24 Jan 2014 at 1:20 am

    It’s the percentage of reviewers giving a positive review (which I think RT considers to be 3+ stars out of 4 or 3.5 out of 5). “Why would a score under 50% for a superhero movie mean it’s probably unsuccessful but not for Twilight?” There have been a LOT of good superhero movies. Over the last 15 years, there have been 22 that scored higher than 70%. The average year sees 1-2 great superhero movies, which I think makes it very hard for bad superhero movies to compete.

    I’m not familiar enough with Twilight’s genres to know what its competition looks like. Incidentally, the first two Hunger Games movies (84% and 90% on Rotten Tomatoes) beat the first two Twilight movies by about $450 million in global ticket sales.

  290. B. McKenzieon 24 Jan 2014 at 2:52 am

    “They list the creator of Black Cat as Kenta Yaboki. It’s KENTARO YABUKI. Is that so difficult?” Words and names from other languages sometimes have more than one correct transliteration. For example, “Dostoyevsky” vs. “Dostoevsky” and “tteokbokki” vs. “dukbokki.”

    Based on a quick Google search, I believe “Yaboki” and “Yabuki” are interchangeable and that some people may shorten “Kentaro” as “Kenta”. Are you certain that “Kenta Yaboki” is actually incorrect?

    Personally, I don’t mind when people spell my last name as “Mackenzie,” especially if English isn’t their first language. I’ve probably done a lot worse to foreign surnames.

  291. Bethon 14 Apr 2014 at 12:55 pm

    These are only the first two pages? Holy crap, I’m glad I avoided those books now.

  292. Ruthon 19 Mar 2017 at 10:07 am

    “Charlie had really been fairly nice about the whole thing”

    Huh??????????? The misuse of adverbs and sentence ughhh how did the book get through editing

  293. Rabe&Dachson 08 May 2017 at 5:37 am

    To be completely honest, I actually enjoyed reading the Twilight books. Granted, I only ever read the first one, mostly because my closest friend was a huge fan of the books and vampires. The writing was actually what I liked the most. The style suited me, and I found the book rather interesting, even if Edward and Bella and Jacob and the rest didn’t really convince me as characters. Even though the plot wasn’t all the way up to riveting, even if the problems were frankly redundant, it set off a well-drawn atmosphere and ended up a surprisingly pleasant read. Now, of course it wasn’t really much of an intellectual challenge, but it was much better than I had expected, due to the overall hate directed at the series. Twilight was the kind of book series that I’d take off the shelf on some rainy, boring day, just to curl up on the coach and try to fight away some of the dismal weather. There were plenty of paragraphs skipped, plenty of eyes rolled and sighs, but it actually held my attention up to the end. And I rather enjoyed it.

    This isn’t a book series about superheroes and action, it isn’t my own favorite genre, good olde fantasy morality and a company of heroes. It’s a book for young teenage girls, spiced up slightly with some vampires and werewolves. And it has a few rather interesting ideas. Maybe this might scare some people, but Bella is actually a pretty relatable heroine, especially for girls like me, quiet wallflowers who tend towards martyrdom. I’m not as shy as I once was, before my family moved to Poland and I found myself forced into wider, human interaction, but I can still emphasize with Bella’s character. I really like hyphens myself, to be honest.
    And taking into account the bland themes and plotline, the Twilight books actually pulled it off. This isn’t a work I will return to with love and affection, but it seems to me a lot of people get off on tearing into this work, while waving off uncomfortable facts about its target audience.

    This isn’t a book for people seeking action, vibrant characters, high stakes and real emotions. This isn’t a book for people seeking warm messages, well-crafted worlds, horror and wit.
    Sadly, this is just a girl’s novel about a dull, bland world, where escape can come only in the form of a dreamy romance- doesn’t that speak for itself?
    Meyer captures that boring world perfectly, much to general chagrin.

    But on another note: Anyone here ever read “The Parasol Protectorate” series?
    When it comes to vampires and werewolves and romances, this is the one series I adore. It’s a steampunk historical fiction, taking place in alternative Victorian London, served with tea and werewolves, and very fashionable vampires.
    Not to mention, our heroine clobbers people over the head with a parasol. If anyone needs to clean out their brain after reading Twilight, I strongly recommend this series.

  294. Leiana Dayon 18 Aug 2020 at 1:32 pm

    Good grief. I’ve heard a lot about Twilight (and how laughably bad it is despite its enourmous fandom) but never read it before. Obviously I’m not missing much. How did all of that get past the editor?!

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