Saturday, 25 September 2010

Weekly Geek – Are you an O.C.R. - Overly Critical Reader

Tara SG from 25 Hour Books ask the Weekly Geekers -  

Over the Tara…

That's right, the girl who likes to make up weird for reading terms is back! After introducing the world to such things as P.A.B.D. (post amazing book depression) and S.B.S. (shiny book syndrome), I'm here to show how to spot if you're an O.C.R. and even more importantly how to avoid becoming one!

O.C.R. = Overly Critical Reader


  • not liking characters in the beginning
    • needing the main character to prove themselves before you'll respect them
  • rolling your eyes while reading
    • needing things to be completely realistic
  • shouting things such as "WTF?!"
    • needing every plot twist and turn to be foreseeable 

How do you avoid becoming an OCR?

  • alternate genres between books (or vary storylines)
    • I find I compare books less and don't overly raise my expectations if I read a UF after a great YA rather than jumping right into another YA book.
  • make a note and let it go
    • Instead of figuring out how you're going to word something in your review, note the page and let it go until later.
  • think about what you're reading
    • Are you reading a paranormal? Then I guess you can't be too surprised if things are unrealistic. Are you reading Chic Lit? Then yeah it's full of completely gag worthy unrealistic romance and steamy sex scenes you probably can't recreate.
  • We read because we want the fantasy... STOP comparing it to real life!!

So now that you've seen some of the symptoms, are you an OCR? What makes you one and how to do try to avoid doing it?

My thoughts..

I don’t  think I am or at least I read right across the genres and I take every book as it comes.. Some things obviously I wont like, but I am not choosey or picky or any such malarkey..

I have been know to curl up with a TSTL heroine and even the over the top hero can float my boat if I am in the right mood.

How about you guys – any of you have O.C.R.

15 Speak To Me:

Tam on 25 September 2010 at 21:13 said...

I choose to call myself a "forgiving" reader. I see fiction books like movies or TV shows. You need to let a certain amount of reality go to make it interesting. Real life on the whole is incredibly boring and tedious. So I don't mind if corners are cut on occasion to make a story more interesting and exciting. Now I don't want MAJOR things, I need some modicum of reality if it's set in the present day world (fantasy and sci-fi get a lot more latitude). The only thing that really annoys me is continuity errors. A comment made that he went commando to a club but then after sex puts on his underwear. Umm. Where was he carrying that? LOL Or they go to the bus station to leave town but later it's noted that his love picked him up at the train station. The bus-train? Is this some kind of new form of transport I don't know? Or their shirts change colors, t-shirts turn into button shirts, those kind of things annoy me, but one incident in a book won't ruin it for me, but my brain does go "Wait a minute".

I know if I was a police officer or a doctor I'd likely be a lot more picky in books that deal with those, but being a boring paper pusher I rarely come across real-life situations that make be go "no way".

Erotic Horizon on 25 September 2010 at 22:31 said...


You have laid out so many good points...

I will admit I am an easy reader to please - Where others moan about predictablities - I welcome it sometimes, sometimes that all I really need..

As for the logistical issues in books - I so get you on that point... it does tend to toss me out of a story though...

It also make me wonder what kind of ploting and charting was the author doing to make some very schoolboy mistakes..

It is irritating to read your profession being written about and fine details are wrong - or authors just miss the boat totally...

"forgiving" reader.
- well said..


Kerrie on 26 September 2010 at 00:26 said...

EH, I often think I am not critical enough. Certainly if you look at my reviews I tend to rate nearly all the books that I read pretty highly, but I don't think at the time I am being too generous. It is only when I look at what someone else has said about the same book that I wonder if I accepted too easily things that reviewer criticised. But it's all relative isn't it? I guess I know what I like, and I basically read/review books that appeal to me. This year I have begun declining offers of books to review where the book plot just doesn't some like something I'd enjoy. Lots of good issues you've raised here. I'll have to go write my post.

Erotic Horizon on 26 September 2010 at 07:42 said...


I like your reviews and your thought process about them..

The kidlet and I know exactly what we are getting when you recommend something or tell us to tread gently with an author...

I suppose it depends the person reading your reviews - diferrent strokes for differnet folks and all that..

For me I know I love books that my mates couldn't even bare to open - but I just chalk it up to the fact that reading is a joy - no matter what you love and it's all about the dicussion..

I look forward to yuor thoughts..


Blodeuedd on 26 September 2010 at 09:53 said...

*raises hand*
That's me, I roll my eyes---a lot! It's lucky then that I do rotate between genres cos else I would surely go insane

Anonymous said...

I like to think that I'm a forgiving reader like Tam. However, there are times when I just can't get over certain examples of WTF-ery. Of course, general the WTF-ery has to do with things the characters say and or things that make me say "Ouch!"

Anonymous said...

I'm only O.C.R. when I'm PMSing.



Sophia (FV) on 26 September 2010 at 15:32 said...

I'm pretty easy going. I don't mind lots of things in books that I would not tolerate in real life.

Lily on 26 September 2010 at 15:58 said...

I'm not over critical. I actually think I'm a pretty easy to please reader. It's fiction so I don't mind if it's not 100% accurate. As long as it's well written and entertaining I'm good.

Lea on 26 September 2010 at 17:04 said...

Another great post EH!

I'm not sure if I'm OCR or not. I have been known to do an occasional eye roll while reading a book that I find particularly ridiculous. However, I like to give the author the benefit of the doubt. That being said, I have also been known to throw a book against the wall and scream F*&K when I've laboured through 350 pages of nonsense and feel totally unsatisfied.

What we enjoy is such an individual experience and what floats one persons boat definitely sinks another. Because of time constraints and I guess becoming more discerning about what I read the DNF pile has increased unfortunately.

Vegetarian Cannibal on 26 September 2010 at 18:08 said...

Oh I know I'm an overly critical reader, lol. WIthout a doubt. And I'm not apologizing for it. It's one of the reasons I don't "do" reviews and partly why I don't read a lot of books.

Which is odd...being a published writer and all, lol.

I usually compare other books to my own. I look at it from: "how would I write this scene?" or "what would I do to make this better if this were mine?" perspective. I can't just "read" a book the way a non-writer person would. I have to dissect it and think about it long after I put it down. And if it doesn't impress me, I feel I've wasted my time analyzing it.

I'm very picky. Yes. I will admit that. But I think it's that trait that makes me a good writer. Or at least I hope I'm a good writer, lol. I dunno!


Autumn on 26 September 2010 at 18:09 said...

Sometimes I wonder if I'm overly critical. I feel like I'm really overly critical of YA in particular. I think it's because I approach the relationships from the perspective of an adult and I can't look at it from a teen or child. I see things like one night stands and dangerous relationships and ridiculous sex and I don't see it as hot or romantic. I see it as silly, but you see the same book reviewed on all the YA Blogs and they're gushing about how romantic it is. I'm sitting there like did I read the same book? Really?

Some of my biggest criticism, across ALL genres, is editing. Where did editing go? I'm not an expert by any means, but I'm seeing errors all the time.

Chris on 26 September 2010 at 18:10 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chris on 26 September 2010 at 18:20 said...

I know I have my OCR moments. Perhaps that's because I've been primarily reading m/m (which actually encompasses a wider variety of genres than I was reading prior to reading m/m). But I know part of it is because the quality of what I read is extremely variable. I have to say that when I read a book that's been published, I expect it to meet certain quality standards. If it doesn't, well... :D

Patti (@TheLoveJunkee) on 2 October 2010 at 03:06 said...

I think I pretty much roll with it. Although, sometimes in a sexy scene, I'll think - his arm is where? How is she doing that? Is that physically possible? :)

I do switch genres when I read though and I do think that helps.