Only five? Really? Okay…
Well, there’s one. Misuse of the ellipsis. Ellipsis is not supposed to be use to create a cliffhanger, or a long pause. Ellipsis is used to show the intentional omission of a word or words from a sentence. That’s it. It’s been co-opted for a lazy purpose, and I don’t like it. I never use it that way in my books, and it drives me crazy when I see other writers using it.
People who chew with their mouths open. It’s disgusting and they should know better. It smacks of bad manners, which is just inexcusable. I don’t care who you are or where you’re from, if you’re older than five you should know better. Speaking of bad manners, people who don’t bother holding doors open for people behind them should be banned.
I’m borrowing this one from Book from Firefly, but there is a special hell for people who talk in the theatre. I’m including the cinema in this, and I will be the person who leans forward and tells you off for ruining my experience. I have no fear in this regard.
There seems to be a fad for putting a question mark at the end of opinion sentences at the moment, at least on the online comment sections that I read. Stop it! Just stop it! If you have an opinion, then you have an opinion. Own it! It’s yours! Using a question mark makes it look like you’re unsure of your own opinion and can’t structure a sentence accurately.
People who don’t parent their children properly. I know from a brief babysitting stint just how frustrating it can be looking after a three year old, and I only had to look after her for three days. Being a full time parent is a very hard job, and it deserves respect. But if you catch your child hitting another one, and then smack them as a punishment, or catch them swearing and shriek “Don’t fucking swear!” at them, then I think you’re falling down on the job. If you take your child to a public place, like a restaurant, and then don’t try to keep them occupied, then I think you should take them home. I’m paying for my dining experience too, and I don’t want to do it while your bored child is running about the place shrieking.