I should have said before but these are just my favorite plots and plot elements, not the only ones I enjoy or think are good. When all is said and done we all look for different things in fiction :).
Now we come to some of my all time favorites:
I love symbolism. Back in the day when ‘Read! Read! It’s fun, we promise!’ was the tagline and undercurrent of every childrens show I joined the Fellowship of the Book (“And my bookmark! And My library Card!”) in a flash. It helped that my ma only bought me books as gifts of course, but that’s another blog post.
Anyway, the idea that books could take you to far of places without you needing to go anywhere and let you be anyone that could do amazing things was great (To little me, who lived in the middle of nowhere, didn’t mind reading as boy characters, and sometimes had my CP getting me down, it was especially therapeutic.)
But the idea that that book world might be alive and able to be affected by a reader character in their outside ‘normal’ world, spilling one into the other by books end? Those stories were, and still are, pure magic to me. As years have gone on from the days of The Neverending Story I’ve hunted for this plot and its lovable brother ‘Everything is Real Somewhere‘ tirelessly. Somehow, no matter how many times I read it, my love for this plot is neverending.
I admit it, I’m a reader of habit. I try my best to read out of my zone of favorite themes and plots, but always return to them. Maybe it’s the warm and cozy feeling they give me of knowing how something might play out, maybe it’s because the new trend toward ‘the future is grim and then our great great grandchildren all die’ isn’t for me. But whatever the case here are some of my favorite elements and plots in no real order…
- The sympathetic (anti?) hero vampire that actually loves being a vampire.
There are vampires that spend their time crying about their fate into wine glasses of blood and vampires that want to go to high school for all of time. This vampire is neither of these and yet I can’t help liking them. Normally they are bloodthirsty monsters, but done with just the right balance and they are blood thirsty monsters who think humans are nice but wouldn’t want to be one (if they ever were human to start with). But they still have emotions, they simply don’t use them to mope about the hand they were given. Well fed and taken care of this interesting mix of old and new vampire myth is pretty rare, even in romance novels. Even rarer than that is them being the hero of a story and not the villain. Where’s the love?
- Main characters that react positively to supernatural and weird happenings in fantasy novels.
I’ll say right away that this favorite element did not come from a happy reader place for me. I swear if I had to read one more novel where the hero mumbles to everyone and her Aunt Bess about how she must be dreaming/going crazy/losing it/ she’d miss school/a date/she was so unlucky etc over finding a hidden magical world I was going to scream. Doubly so if the only one who reacts with joy at finding a magical world/discovering magic in our world/finding a talking unicorn is only the goofy nerdy sidekick of the book. For that matter why aren’t there more books about the goofy nerdy sidekick as the hero character? I feel like in this day and age we outnumber the sensible ‘I’d rather be in my nice boring world feeding my goldfish’ adventurers five to one 😉