The older I’ve gotten the more I’ve noticed a few odd quirks about myself as both a writer and a reader. I’ve always known that I tended too (mostly unintentionally) mentally edit other writers work as I read it. Recently however I’m noticing an interesting pattern, in more cases than not, I find myself frustrated with the word choices of other authors to the point at which it’s almost hard to read a story, and it seems coincidentally or not, to tend towards male authors. I realized this trend when I started ‘The Nix’ by Nathan Hill. I was drawn in from the prologue, and elements of the first few pages, but I quickly began to notice that there were occasionally phrasing choices that frustrated me, to the point I had to put it down for a moment.
It’s an odd thing, honestly. Editing other writers (in your head) is one thing, but being unable to read something because of it, is entirely different. It’s frustrating, because I want to be able to enjoy the story. I want to be able to be taken in enough that I don’t even think about it that way, regardless of the whole read like a writer idea, but some things I just can’t seem to read without being frustrated by phrasing choices. Does anyone else notice this when they read a story?