What is your biggest pet peeve in novels when you're just reading? What jolts you out of the story, or interrupts the flow, or makes you want to put the book down or even throw it across the room? What red flags raise in your head in regards to amateur writing?
We all have something that bothers us.
For some, it's head hopping (abrupt POV shifts that aren't separated by a chapter or page break, ala Nicholas Sparks - LOVE him, but come on!) For others, it's cliche phrases or predictable plots. For still others, it's a contrived plot, where things happen OH so conveniently (not kidding, I read a romantic suspense not too long ago by a super-famous, best selling, award winning author, and the heroine just happened to find an object she suddenly discovered she needed RIGHT then, in that moment, by chance. There was zero foreshadowing or set up. Uh uh. That's cheating!!! lol)
What is your pet peeve?
Remember, it's always so much easier to find fault in someone else's writing, whether that's a published novel off the shelf or a critique for a friend. Just be careful to search your own work as thoroughly and get trusted friends to do the same for you. He that cast the first stone, and such... ;)