So there's something I've been wondering. It's pretty obvious that when I read a book, I don't enjoy it the same way someone else might. Of course, it's possible that I can, and will, but there's no accounting for individual taste.
I love finishing a book, or a movie, and experiencing a catharsis afterward. That feeling of openness, and sanity, and a story well-told and well-wrapped, that stays with me for days. My favorite stories are the ones that I just can't stop thinking about. They earn an exalted place in the Top Stories of All Time list that I carry around in my head. You know, like the kinds you find in the sidebar of someone's Facebook page.
Stories that move me in this way tend to be any combination of epic, gritty, original, romantic, and tense. [Insert any other cliche movie review adjectives you can think of here]. I love the romantic tension in YA books, along with the (usually) upbeat plots. I love a good puzzle thriller, and the occasional spy/ suspense novel. I love quirky fantasy, a la Piers Anthony. I love sweeping mythos and world-saving adventures in MG books. And of course, a good mystery is always great fun!
Okay, so my tastes tend to swing far and wide, it's true. This is probably why I write in so many different genres-- because I read in so many different genres. But these are the story elements that move me. I was thinking about this the other day, and thought it would make an interesting survey. So pray, tell me, what kinds of stories make you have an emotional reaction? What stories stay with you for days?