1. Authors who think “Lovecraftian” means “vomit a thesaurus over it.” You’re doing it wrong.
2. Serial killers with mommy issues and odd sexual fetishes/religious hangups.
3. Vampires in general, but especially vampires who are perfect and sparkly and sexy and angsty. Show me vampires who go to church and go to Walmart. Show me vampires with illnesses or disabilities. Show me vampires whose undead-ness doesn’t change the people they used to be.
4. Zombies. Especially, especially zombies created by Super Seekrit viruses or weird government experiments. And zombies that rot–why is it that the virus/magic/whatever that reanimates the corpse can’t preserve it? Show me zombies that have some scrap of humanity left and aren’t entirely mindless.
5. Post-apocalyptic/dystopian protagonists who are assholes to everyone. I know, I know, we’re all trying to survive out here and not drink the glowing water, but you know what Al Capone said about a kind word and a gun. (And while I’m at it, let’s have more post-apocalyptic/dystopian worlds that aren’t the product of a weird virus or a nuclear disaster. It’s not 1980.)
Frustrated reader is frustrated.