Thursday, December 30, 2004

Continuity Problems

I'm reading a novel by an author who's a fairly big name in his genre. This is also a book that won a major Best of the Year award. And it's one of the most sloppily-written things I've ever read. Early morning becomes night with no warning. One of the characters says he's never seen a black man before, when three pages earlier he was in a fairly small room with one. Other characters get up and prominently walk out of a scene, yet half a page later they're suddenly back with no explanation, taking part in the conversation, and then they get up and walk out again. I know it can come across as sour grapes when a writer criticizes a more successful writer, but somebody -- the writer, the editor, the copy editor -- really should have caught these mistakes. And I'm only a third of the way through the book, so I don't know what else I'll find. What's really frustrating is that except for the carelessness, this is a pretty enjoyable book with likable characters.

2 comments:

ARCHAVIST said...

Go on it's been long enough - who was this writer?

James Reasoner said...

I kind of hate to say it, but -- I don't remember! I wonder if I even finished the book.