How I Lost My Innocence & How to Write A Spoiler (yes, they're connected)

February 15, 2014

The wanderings of a mind that is wont to ponder. Check out past Between Bookends posts here!
I was just on my way to do something constructive, when I got completely sidetracked by an IDIOT WHO HASN'T A LICK OF SENSE. And so I'm here for an epic rant, because I absolutely need to let this out ,otherwise I'm going to burst.

I wrote earlier about how I never went near the Shatter Me series despite it being at my the top of my to-read list. I never read reviews, I never joined discussions, I averted my eyes from rants and raves alike on Twitter and generally stayed away from anything that even remotely smelled like it could have potential spoilers. BECAUSE I WANTED TO PRESERVE MY SENSE OF SUSPENSE AND SAVOUR THE BUILD UP TO THE CONCLUSION.

So you can only imagine my irritation (really, you can only imagine. Because whatever you're imagining, my ire is many times worse than that), to put it mildly, when this happened:

I was checking out a new blog I happened to come across, and just skimming a random discussion post on love triangles, when right there, in perfectly normal looking words, with no indication of it's potential danger to innocent bystanders, IS THE FREAKING (I am so tempted to swear right now) ENDING OF IGNITE ME (or rather, who Juliette ends up with, which, lets face it, is basically the same thing)!

How? Just, really? How can someone do that? HOOOWWWWWWWWW????? *echoes* *echoes* *echoes*

And that wasn't the only spoiler in there either. There were TWO, and both Shatter Me spoilers! Honestly, I would like to give that blogger a piece of my mind right now.

The thing is, usually, I can sense a spoiler a mile away, and always hightail it out of the vicinity immediately. But this? I was ambushed. The post was about love triangles, a kind the blogger especially liked, which was indicative of the participants in the triangle. She even gave examples, which is where this entire incident comes in. The first example was something about a Rachel Vincent series, and even though the blogger had elaborated a bit on the triangle, there were no spoilers. So naturally, I would assume that the same would hold true for the rest of the examples. Right?

So. Not.

I'm just going along my way, when

BAM! ADAM AND WARNER SPOILER!
Me: *jaw drop* That did not just happen, did it? No, I'm not going to go back and make sure I read that right. Then I'll lose the element of doubt. Soldier on, Fahima.

*picks jaw back up from the floor and continues*

Few words in...

BAM! IGNITE ME SPOILER!

Me: *heart seizes up* *on the verge of crying* How can this be happening now of all times when I was able to stave off the stinky spoilers for two whole freaking years?
And so, here I am now, all battered and heart sore (drama much? Well, it was TWO WHOLE FREAKING YEARS. I'm entitled to some drama), and I dont know what to do now, except try to convince myself that it's possible I would've misunderstood, because the other escapist alternative - to forget, is impossible.

Unfortunately, even this does not work:

About a week ago, Debby wrote about how to avoid spoilers.

But what if they're not even spottable? Like mine here? And so, this post right here is for the stinky spoilery people who write spoilers but conveniently forget about warning readers about them.

How To Write A Spoiler

Dear stinky spoilery people,

I'm going to give you the benefit of doubt and assume that you simply dont know what is a spoiler or if you do, you dont know how to go about writing it properly. So this is for you.
What is a spoiler?
From Wikipedia:
A spoiler is an element of a disseminated summary or description of any piece of fiction that reveals any plot elements which threaten to give away important details concerning the turn of events of a dramatic episode. Typically, the details of the conclusion of the plot, including the climax and ending, are especially regarded as spoiler material. It can also be used to refer to any piece of information regarding any part of a given media that a potential consumer would not want to know beforehand. Because enjoyment of fiction depends a great deal upon the suspense of revealing plot details through standard narrative progression, the prior revelation of how things will turn out can "spoil" the enjoyment that some consumers of the narrative would otherwise have experienced.
Too much verbiage? Then how about this:

From Urban Dictionary:
When someone reveals a previously unknown aspect of something which you likely would have rather learned on your own.
Now that you know what a spoiler is, I'm sure you wouldn't want to commit the grave mistake of spoiling things for innocent readers. So this is how you go about doing it the right way:

Method 1: The Everyday Way
At the beginning of a post containing spoilers, you do this:

Otherwise, just before the spoiler, you do this:

Method 2: The Tech Savvy Way
Ashley from Nose Graze is awesome and shared this method of hiding spoilers from your readers, so that they dont even set eyes on it unless they really want to:
See? It has a really convenient hyperlink that when clicked, reveals the spoiler, which otherwise remains hidden, and harmless to a hapless reader. Ashley has a whole entire post where she teaches you how to do this. I strongly suggest you read it, learn it, and practice it.

Method 3: The Visual Way
If you wanted to be all lady-like and love Downton Abbey, you could use this:
No? Then how about this:
Or just put this up and forget about it. This does the job pretty well, if you ask me:
Now that's not too difficult, is it?


And now you know. If, inspite of knowing how to write a spoiler, you go ahead and do it the wrong way, the only thing I have to say to you is that you are an inconsiderate, idiotic person who has to come with a warning sticker that warns people that you are potentially hazardous to their reading health.

That is all.

I'm sure you've also been spoiled at one time or another. Which book was it? Can you think up of some suitably gruesome punishments for stinky spoilery people? I'm feeling bloodthirsty at the moment and would like to fantasize.