Every reader has those certain words that make them auto-buy a book. These are more commonly known as ‘buzzwords’. There are definite pros and cons to having bookish buzzwords, and i certainly have plenty of words that make me pick up a book.
A buzzword can be anything. Some of the most common ones are ‘family’, ‘mental health’, ‘anthology’, ‘circus’, ‘friendship’, ‘feminism’ and ‘LGBTQ+’. A buzzword is literally any word that describes a book that makes you want to pick it up right away, they’re there to excite us. For instance if you really enjoyed books with a great family atmosphere then you would definitely pick up all of the books that were family orientated and that was described somewhere. They’re cliches and tropes of sorts.
My own personal buzzwords that get me very excited about a book include:
- Mental health
- Social media
Without a doubt if a book mentions a mental heath plot line, i’m there. As someone who has mental health issues and strives to help mental health improvement in the UK, i want to read as much as i can about mental health. It also spans a huge amount of varieties with the different kinds of mental health you can deal with.
Another i’m obsessed with is the mention of university. I think this buzzword is a carry over from my time at uni a few years ago. I really love the settings and the mix of characters you get in university based novels such as Freshers by Lucy Ivison and Tom Ellen and Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell.
‘Summer’ is definitely my guilty pleasure buzzword. If something is described as a summer read then i absolutely have to pick it up to read over summer.
One buzzword that i’ve never been very interested in is ‘friendship’. A lot of books are described as friendship novels, however in most novels there is a friendship element between some of the characters, so i’ve never been intrigued by the novels completely based on friendship, i feel like often they can read a little dry.
Buzzwords are great when reading because it means you can find books that your guaranteed to be interested in or love a lot faster than you normally would. If you have a small list of things you’d like to be included in a story or two, you’re much more likely to enjoy it. However, i don’t think buzzwords are always a great thing.
If you’re constantly looking for books that include your buzzwords or involve some of the topics you love, you’re hardly venturing in to other topics or genres that you might actually enjoy. For example, when i started reading my one buzzword would be ‘chick-lit’. It was an easy place to start reading and i got in to the habit of solely looking for chick-lit novels. It took me quite a while to move away from that buzzword and find other genres that i really did enjoy. I ended up falling in love with so many other topics (I don’t know where i’d be without the circus trend at the moment) and started reading a little more adventurously.
So even if you have your buzzwords for novels, make sure you read a little away from them at times, stray to something completely different that might not make you ‘buzz’ but intrigues you. You will develop more buzzwords over time as you find more and more things you like to read. I imagine in the future mine will change and i will add ‘fairy-tale retelling’s’ and ‘horror’ to my collection as i read more of those genres.
Let me know what your bookish buzzwords are!