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  1. #91
    My current perspective on critiquing:

    I'm a fan of the critics who identify what the writer is attempting and offer suggestions to improve their efforts.

    I'm not a fan of the critics who pick apart the writing because it doesn't match how the critics themselves would write it.

    I say: help the writer do what they're trying to do. Don't try to push the writer to do it your way.

    This means letting go of the notion that you know better. It means trusting that the writer has their own creative plan. It means stop trying to teach the writer, and start trying to help them, one fellow writer to another.


  2. #92
    Yair . . .

    What we like and dislike is subjective and I often qualify comments with . . . (in my opinion).

    I hardly ever comment on punctuation or spelling which I believe is more properly described as editing.

    The same as a poster mentions up thread, I look for style and flow and structure.

    Most times these elements will be enhanced by wholesale cropping of words particularly the 'was's' the 'were's' the 'this's and the 'that's' and 'ing' and 'ly' words.

    I keep mentioning such points and, if folks object (as has been known to happen) it's their problem not mine.

    Of course the other issue is what application the document is written for. Pieces intended for self published niche readerships will likely have a different look and feel to more mainstream publishing . . . all perfectly understandable.

    In any market though, smooth easily read and comprehended prose, describing action, emotions or surroundings is to be preferred over pretentious wordy rhetoric and I will always critique to that effect.

    Cheers.
    Last edited by scrub puller; July 10th, 2015 at 01:43 AM.

  3. #93
    Give what you can, let the writer do with it what they will. Be helpful, be thorough, but don't ignore someone's work because you are concerned whether others will approve of your crit. I don't think I've ever done what could be called a 'great' critique, but have helped writers find glitches on occasion. Probably pissed a few off too, but you'll have that with any creative medium where there's critique.

    Crittin's as much for me as for anyone. My editing eye has sharpened up tenfold from it and I love the reciprocal help I get from others.

    It's what makes this place well-rounded, in my opinion, because without honest critique it is hard for writers to actually improve. Wish I had more to give in terms of skill as a critter, but that's not going to stop me from trying to help.
    It all starts with a name and flows from there. A ridiculous moniker springs to mind and it launches like a multi-lubed slippery-sloop down chutes made of buttery-floops. Down, down, down. We watch, spellbound. Rapturous. Glockenspiel. We do our due diligence with penitence and penicillin. Do whatís due, then dew drops on your moon-pops.


  4. #94
    Member Arrakis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle R View Post
    My current perspective on critiquing:

    I'm a fan of the critics who identify what the writer is attempting and offer suggestions to improve their efforts.

    I'm not a fan of the critics who pick apart the writing because it doesn't match how the critics themselves would write it.

    I say: help the writer do what they're trying to do. Don't try to push the writer to do it your way.

    This means letting go of the notion that you know better. It means trusting that the writer has their own creative plan. It means stop trying to teach the writer, and start trying to help them, one fellow writer to another.

    I definitely have to agree with this post. Mine belief is that every writer should find their own unique style, instead of looking up methods on Google or elsewhere. Despite mine blunt honesty, I always try mine absolute best to let the writer make up his or her own mind, instead of acting like an overbearing relative. For instance, instead of giving them mine own ideas, I'll ask them questions about the things in their stories--that way, they'll make themselves expand upon the plotline without any input from me. From mine perspective, that actually helps them more, since they're lifting the mental weights on their own. I might make a suggestion or two, but I don't try to shove it down their throat.

    Quote Originally Posted by musichal View Post
    Personally, I think the critic sometimes needs to have the same skin-thickness he expects from those critiqued.
    Ha ha, well said. Everytime I write a review, I am always steeled for a backlash.

    Challenge your critics! Ruin their lives!
    Last edited by Arrakis; July 16th, 2015 at 12:29 AM.
    "The greatness of evil lies in its awful accuracy.
    Without that deadly talent for being in the right place at the right time, evil must suffer defeat.
    For unlike its opposite, good, evil is allowed no human failings, no miscalculations.
    Evil must be perfect, or depend upon the imperfections of others."

    ~Narrator of The Outer Limits


  5. #95
    I personally am very sensitive to criticism. Almost all the comments I get on my writing are of this form:

    "Writing and supposed edits" "This is wrong, that is wrong, this word is wrong, this whole sentence is wrong, your idea is wrong"

    And I hate wrong whether I know that I did something wrong or whether someone is commenting on my wrong.

    They almost never give me positive comments and even when they do, the negative is way higher in magnitude.

    This is exactly why I have stopped posting my actual writing here and instead posting my ideas.

    I get angry at them. It only shows as frustration in my posts but it is more than frustration.

    I feel as though they are unnessacarily attacking my own writing. My momma isn't like them when it comes to editing.

    She still gives very good edits but in a pleasant way, not one that makes me angry.

  6. #96
    Hi there caters,

    I'm sorry you've not been happy with the feedback. It can be tricky to pitch the level of critique so that it's helpful without being hurtful. I did see that one member made a personal remark in your previous thread, which is unfortunate.

    On the whole, though, I think that people are just trying to help you to improve as a writer. We can all get better - I know I've learned a lot here.

    I hope that you have better experiences with us in the future.

    HC
    My novels Hidden Content , Hidden Content and Hidden Content are available from Amazon

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    You can find me on Twitter: Hidden Content

  7. #97
    The only critique I remember that p*ssed me off insanely was one where the woman made the comment, "You are an idiot." I had already developed somewhat tough skin by then from heavy participation in the critique process but that one made steam come out of my ears. If she'd been in front of me, I'm pretty sure I'd have slapped her upside the head. I'm not saying it's not true but she didn't have to say it that way!

    However, in a weird way I think the critique comments that don't sit right with us are doing us a favor. Better to get that milestone first stingy review (and possible meltdown lol) handled on a semi-private, moderated critique board than out in public after your work is published. No matter what you write, someone is not going to like it and they can say pretty much anything they want, out there forever, right there next to your "Buy This Book" button. Your only choices then are to eat it or entertain the entire internet with a public tantrum. :p
    Last edited by Carly Berg; July 11th, 2016 at 09:15 PM.
    Story Prompts That Work Hidden Content
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  8. #98
    Quote Originally Posted by HarperCole View Post
    Hi there caters,

    I'm sorry you've not been happy with the feedback. It can be tricky to pitch the level of critique so that it's helpful without being hurtful. I did see that one member made a personal remark in your previous thread, which is unfortunate.

    On the whole, though, I think that people are just trying to help you to improve as a writer. We can all get better - I know I've learned a lot here.

    I hope that you have better experiences with us in the future.

    HC
    So you're saying that I am just perceiving those comments with edits as negative comments when really they are positive comments and just don't look like it at first?

  9. #99
    Well, you could look at it both ways, but I think they're positive in that they're suggestions you can incorporate into your stories if you like.

    HC
    My novels Hidden Content , Hidden Content and Hidden Content are available from Amazon

    Hidden Content Hidden Content Hidden Content

    You can find me on Twitter: Hidden Content

  10. #100
    Quote Originally Posted by caters View Post
    I personally am very sensitive to criticism.
    That's unfortunate. It means you face a future of pain and disappointment even if you do good work in any field. Even the greatest, most talented and successful people are not immune to criticism, and not just from those who love to snipe or chip away at someone to salve their own egos, but from those with the benefit of arm's-length perspective who can see the chink, the missed flaw, or a better way to approach or develop or present the work.



    Almost all the comments I get on my writing are of this form:

    "Writing and supposed edits" "This is wrong, that is wrong, this word is wrong, this whole sentence is wrong, your idea is wrong"

    They almost never give me positive comments and even when they do, the negative is way higher in magnitude.
    OK. If a critique points out what is wrong without explaining why it is wrong and then providing what would make it right, it's a poor critique.

    If a critique ever refers to the idea, rather than the presentation of that idea, it is not a critique; it is a breach of critical protocol and should be ignored utterly because it comes from someone who does not know how to critique properly.

    It is not our right to argue or challenge the idea, only to assess and help improve the presentation of the idea.

    This is exactly why I have stopped posting my actual writing here and instead posting my ideas.
    Well, that's your choice. But ideas cannot be critiqued, and therefore do not belong in the creative forums. Discussing and developing ideas can be fun, but won't help to better write or otherwise present them.

    I feel as though they are unnessacarily attacking my own writing.
    Unnecessarily attacking is probably what you believe, considering your sensitivity to criticism. I, however, take it as a personal insult that you would suggest the members of my forum who take the time and trouble to read and respond to your own writing are trolls.

    Your own writing is what WF members volunteer to go through, point out weaknesses or flaws, and, if able, to recommend remedies. That's what WritingForums.com was created to do: to help writers (and creative artists) improve their writing (and creative arts) and do better in their chosen pursuits.

    If your writing is attracting trolls, then perhaps it says something about your writing and your future prospects. Regardless, trolls should be reported the instant they are found so that they can be banned from this forum. However, someone telling you to fix your spelling, or that a word or sentence doesn't mean what you think it means, is not a troll. That member is doing you a favour.

    My momma isn't like them when it comes to editing.

    She still gives very good edits but in a pleasant way, not one that makes me angry.
    I hope your momma is a member so she can help show the way to others.

    Quote Originally Posted by Carly Berg View Post
    The only critique I remember that p*ssed me off insanely was one where the woman made the comment, "You are an idiot."
    Did this happen here? Who made this comment in breach of da Rules* to you? Did you report it?


    *Flaming: Flaming will not be tolerated. When critiquing, keep observations about the work, do not make inflammatory personal judgments of or attacks on the writer. In any discussion, keep it about the topic and not the poster. Violations will be deleted. Repeated offenses or ignoring staff warnings will result in an infraction.
    "I don't know ... I'm making it up as I go ..." - Dr I Jones

    Nature abhors perfection - cats abhor a vacuum!

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    If I act like I own the place, it's because I did.





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