Top Couples in Fiction, Breaking the Rules of Novel-Writing, Killing Off the Printed Book – All Discussed Here at Stories and Stuff in 2012!

Goodbye 2012! (English New Year, by Amgalanbaatar, licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0))

Goodbye 2012! (English New Year, by Amgalanbaatar, licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0))

It’s not quite the new year yet, but let’s get this up before all of the Christmas business  take over:

Top 5 Literary Couples

Here’s a secret – any time you put ‘top five’ or ‘top ten’ in your title you increase the likelihood that people will find and read it. I don’t use this trick often, but maybe I should. All the same, I think a list of the top literary couples in fiction does deserve to be highly rated, so I’m glad this post is at the top. And no, this list does not include Romeo and Juliet, or Edward and Bella from Twilight – debate at your leisure whether I made a mistake in leaving them out.

Breaking the 10 Simple Rules for Writing a Novel

Everyone wants to know the secret for writing the novel everyone will read. Is it actually a matter of following all the rules perfectly and coming up with a bestseller, or is there something more mysterious to the writing process?

Will E-books Kill the Printed Book?

Big news this year – ebook sales are going up! And up and up and up. The internet loved to debate endlessly whether this meant the end of the traditional book publishing industry, and here I joined in on the action.

Those Pesky Phoenicians! – A Thought From Herodotus

Why is this in the Top 10? Herodotus is cool and all, but I’d argue The Iliad beats him out in the list of ancient works of literature. But my obsession over The Iliad did not make the Top 10 posts of this year, while good old Herodotus did. Glad to know the venerable old historian is still respected.

Let’s Just Blame the Plot on Someone’s Sex Drive

Putting ‘sex’ in the title is another way to make your page views go up, as I discovered with this post. When readers discovered I was merely ranting about how mediocre authors use random attraction between characters as a motivation for the whole plot of a novel, without any further development of the characters or their motivations, I’m not sure how many of them stuck around. All the same, this is an annoying issue with romance novels that should be resolved!

Why Some Girls Like Mr. Darcy

Just talk about Mr. Darcy when talking about romance novels, and most readers will have an opinion. But let’s not talk about whether he’s good-looking, or rich, because that’s been gone over SO MANY times before. And critics love to sneer at Jane Austen fans and claim they’re all delusional gold-diggers. No, let’s look at the complexity of the character Jane Austen created (see character depth, in contrast to the lack of character development described in the post above this one), and see why this is a good reason for fans to enjoy reading about him.

Writing Characters of Different Ethnicities

I admitted a struggle I had with my writing, and the post made it into the Top 10.

Real-life Romance: A Monk and a Nun Get Married

A monk and a nun get married – it does sound a bit surprising, doesn’t it. And ‘real-life’ romance? Who on earth could this monk and nun actually be?

Glad to see this post in the Top 10, as a history lover, and a lover of sweet stories of real-life romance.

Talking Down to Readers

J.R.R. Tolkien has been accused of talking down to his readers. Is this true? With the release of The Hobbit movie, this post is just as timely as ever – if anything, The Hobbit talks down to its readers far more than Lord of the Rings!

AND… The Top Viewed Fiction Post of 2012:

Last year I separated this list into non-fiction and fiction posts. Since I didn’t want to make a list completely composed of chapters from Why Polly? I decided to just mention the top fiction post of my blog last on this list. And surprise, surprise, it is not actually a chapter from Why Polly?Not Emma, A Missing Chapter from Jane Austen’s Emma actually beats it out! Shows that the classic established authors win every time. 🙂

Have a Merry Christmas and a fantastic New Year! Thanks for reading!

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