I figured out why I don't like to read Flannery O'Connor, or really a lot of short-story writers: I don't like their characters. They write about people whose personalities are so distasteful to me that I would never want to be in the same room with them, let alone dig around in their brains like reading a story would require me to do. They're all people who have forgotten that life can be beautiful sometimes. More importantly, they've forgotten how to make beauty in their own lives. They keep anger and hate and prejudice inside their blackened, damaged hearts.
When I write, I may write about sad things, but I write about beautiful things as well, things that aren't soiled by generations of banality.
So in other news, I've decided to become a short story writer. :)