Author Kate Elliott has an interesting post on a new way to classify stories: by the characters who drive them.
Folks in comments are listing the characters (with accompanying story lines) that they can’t stand, and it’s a lot of the usual stuff with some interesting ideas mixed in.
Here’s my list of character genres I can’t stand:
* Anything with rock stars. Even authors I really really like will try my patience with rock musicians and their boring problems. It doesn’t help that I don’t think music translates well to the page.
* Two characters with an instant soul-mate bond. I just don’t find it compelling.
* The troubled cop with the dying wife. Not terrible, I guess, but I seem to have read too many of them.
* The recovering alcoholic detective. Another non-compelling character.
* The Devious Fantasy Character. I bounced off one really well-regarded fantasy series because one character’s Plot To Destabilize Everything still hadn’t come to fruition after 100+ pages. Not compelling.
* The Badass Who Punches Down. You guys recognize that Keith Olbermann reference, I guess? Whatever you think of the man himself, the rule that people should always punch up, never punch down (iow, attack those more powerful than you rather than less) is a good one. And yeah, I consider snark and sarcasm to be punching.
What about you guys? Any “character genres” you particularly dislike? (Be sure to check out Elliott’s post.)