Sequels Pt. 1

You know what’s the worst? Sequels and trilogies. I’m so sick of them. I remember a time when you could pick up a book at the library, read it, and finish it. As in, the story was over when you ran out of pages. Now EVERYTHING is a series. And you don’t even get a resolution worth diddly.

This book is such a beat-down I couldn't even try

Such a beat-down I didn’t even try sequels “Medium Women” or “Venti Women”

Here’s a scenario I frequently: I’m reading a book and really enjoying it. But a sense of dread is building: I’m three quarters done. And I don’t think I’m close to the end. There’s no way the author could create a satisfying conclusion in the last quarter. I only just met the love interest, like, three chapters ago. Now I’m fifty pages from the end. Forty. Oh, shit, I’m holding the last pages in my fingers and my thumb is practically touching my index finger. There’s nothing leftandIwantaresolutionand

Coming soon: the thrilling filler book in the trilogy!

Damn it! Come ON. All you had to do was shoot the badguy in the face and everyone could have had a happy ending. Except for the badguy.

Look, I liked your characters enough to read ONE book. The law of diminishing returns says that the longer you draw this out, the more the author becomes the antagonist.

This comes down to audience expectations and what publishers want.

Sellingout.jpg

Nice cash grab, Tolkein. Way to sell out.

Audiences right now expect for there to be a Harry Potter and the Next Class Year. Hunger Games established in YA dystopian novels the could-have-been-one-book-but-ok-let’s-deal-with-the-whole-systemic-problem trilogy model, I think.

Don’t get me wrong. There were already series out there. I grew up on wanting the next Animorph book or Nancy Drew or whatever. But no one read The Hardy Boys and the Secret of the Old Mill, got the end, and thought “I can’t wait to find out if Tom Hardy and his brother Tanya Harding survive in the next book!”

If Tolstroy wrote today, there'd be War and Peace 2: Dawn of Rising Unrest and War and P3ace

If Tolstroy wrote today, there’d be War and Peace 2: Dawn of Rising Unrest and War and P3ace

So I’m forced to ask at the end of a lengthy post: what happened to concision, people? Must I skim through a middle book that amounts to little more than “Screw Flanders” repeated over and over?

All that said, I’d love to have the royalties from a trilogy. Do as I say, not as I do, people.

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Social awkwardness – good for everyone

I don’t really understand people who don’t have some tiny piece of social awkwardness. Some little piece of them that constantly worries that they’re inconveniencing someone else by merely existing.

These people are often assholes. I present the following case study: The soda fountain/convenience bartop.

Pictured: Coke products and anxiety

Pictured: Coke products and anxiety

A normal person moves to the soda fountain, fizzes up, and moves on, aware that there might be – no, definitely IS – a person waiting to use the machine. Even if the place is deserted, they will fill their beverage and move on, just in case.

But then there’s the person that fills. and stares into the cup to watch the bubbles recede, then top it off again.

“Ok,” I say to myself, as the person standing to one side, waiting patiently. “It was especially foamy. If they don’t give it a second, they’ll walk away with only half a glass of Fresca.”

This person waits, tops off. Then F&%*ING takes a sip! Right there at the soda fountain! And then gets another refill. With me clearly nearby, probably dying of thirst. I could have just stepped out of the Mojave, weak from dehydration! This person doesn’t know.

Some people are more prone to this complete lack of humanity than others. Their lack of soda fountain etiquette befuddles me. Is it a lack of situational awareness? Problems with peripheral vision or even total blindness is no excuse. You just assume you’re getting in someone else’s way if you’re normal.

The third person just wants a napkin, for crying out loud

The third person just wants a napkin, for crying out loud

It’s the same mentality of the indivual that stands in line for 10 mintes with the menu in full view, gets to the front of the line, and stares at the selections as though they’ve only just presented themselves.

“Hm, maybe I’ll try the, um… hm… Does the number three have pickles on it?”

Yes, Brenda, it says so right there! On the menu the rest of us have read cover to cover while we waited.

The best kind of people in the world are not the well-adjusted. The best kind or teeming with agoraphobia and awkwardness so crippling that society continues. The worst kind is Brenda.