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Crits (2 Viewers)

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Arrakis

Senior Member
I hate that word, "positive". Quite frankly, not every positive action has pleasant results. Many positive thinkers I've met want everyone else to be like them, out of some misguided idealism, without ever realising just how narrow-minded and uncivilised they are. With them, it's always positive-positive-positive, and when they see something negative, their whole damn world comes crashing down. But they never stop to think: is it a productive negative, or a destructive negative? Just goes to show that too much of a good thing can--and often will--create a bad thing.

Productive Negative said:
Your protagonist is one-dimensional and needs more depth.

Destructive Negative said:
Your writing sucks. Give the hell up.

See the difference?
 
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caters

Senior Member
No matter which type of negative, I get angry(which I only show as frustration) if that shows up in a critique. My momma can do just as good as them but without all the angering negatives.

Only as a last resort do I actually show my anger but even then it is indirectly(post about all the thinking I went through writing the whole chapter or scene(like saying "Robin is just not very expressive of his emotions, not an emotionless robot like you say he is." and showing that it is just lack of expression, not lack of emotion.)).

She knows I am very sensitive to negatives and so she positively critiques and edits it.

For example she might say "Why don't you change it from "Alma had pain from her heart" to "Alma had angina"?" or something along those lines. She never says it in a negative way. She always gives me suggested edits and never forces me to edit it this way or that way. She also asks me if she did a good job editing it before she goes to the next edit.

Me and my Momma are like a team. We work for each other. I write stuff for her to edit and she edits what I have written and then I write more stuff for her to edit(other stories or more chapters of the same story).

Those negative critiques I get on forums make me feel like "They are forcing me to edit my characters, Well I made my characters the way they are for a reason." or "It is perfectly fine there, what are you talking about?"
 

Cran

Da Boss Emeritus
Patron
No matter which type of negative, I get angry(which I only show as frustration) if that shows up in a critique. My momma can do just as good as them but without all the angering negatives...

Me and my Momma are like a team. We work for each other. I write stuff for her to edit and she edits what I have written and then I write more stuff for her to edit(other stories or more chapters of the same story).

Those negative critiques I get on forums make me feel like "They are forcing me to edit my characters, Well I made my characters the way they are for a reason." or "It is perfectly fine there, what are you talking about?"
If all of this is true, why are you wasting your time on forums?

Why are you here?
 
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caters

Senior Member
I thought I would get at least 1 positive critique. And even if I wouldn't I figured that posting about my ideas would give me good suggestions. So yeah, even with only negative critiques here, I am still getting positives about my ideas so I am still getting help from you, even if it isn't from critiques.
 

LeeC

WF Veterans
I thought I would get at least 1 positive critique. And even if I wouldn't I figured that posting about my ideas would give me good suggestions. So yeah, even with only negative critiques here, I am still getting positives about my ideas so I am still getting help from you, even if it isn't from critiques.

I'm well aware that unwelcome perspectives fall on deaf ears, having been there. Be that as it may, something I learned in my art career, and again with writing (an art in itself), is that pats on the back retard one's skill development. One benefits most from others critical perspectives of their work, even finding nuggets in remarks possibly meant to sting. The artist, and especially the writer, is best served in first clearing the hurdle of separating self from skill development.

In writing for public consumption, it's the public ear that need be captured. On the other hand, if one is writing only for self-amusement, then it's contradictory to present one's efforts to the public. Demanding praise for one's efforts is self-defeating.
 
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Phil Istine

WF Veterans
I thought I would get at least 1 positive critique. And even if I wouldn't I figured that posting about my ideas would give me good suggestions. So yeah, even with only negative critiques here, I am still getting positives about my ideas so I am still getting help from you, even if it isn't from critiques.

I'm not so sure that labelling critique as "positive" or "negative" is particularly helpful. If someone notes that a piece of writing turns them off, but also attempts to say why, that is good in my view; it gives the writer something to work with. It's possible that the one supplying critique has misunderstood the piece, so it opens an opportunity to discuss this. If the critter has misunderstood it, there's a fair chance that others may too, so it gives an opportunity to make adjustments.
However, changing a piece due to a critique is always author's choice, but if a few are saying similar things, it's advisable to look a bit harder.
From the other side of the fence: I have found that it takes a lot more balls to give critique than to post work.
 

topcol

Senior Member
I cannot fault any of the comments here re: negative feedback. It strikes me that reactions to same are remarkably similar to the differing reactions of British and French restaurants when they receive a complaint about their food.

It is somewhat better in Britain now but generally complaints about meals served in UK restaurants often provoke defensive responses from the kitchen or serving staff leading to no improvement in the food or service. French restaurant staff will take the complaint seriously and attempt to resolve the problem which has caused the complaint.

I think writing and receiving negative critiques is pretty much along the same lines, just swap 'British' for affronted critiqued writers and 'French' for those who take the criticism in the spirit in which it is offered.

Incidentally, I am British with French relatives, no criticism of the respective cuisines intended.

Keep up the good work, you critics (critiquers?).

topcol
 
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Garvan

Senior Member
I think that giving one-sided critiques are the worst thing to do to a writer. Regardless of what kind of "negative" you use it is useless without knowing what you did right. So next time you give a critique - take the time to point out what was done WELL as well as what needed more work.
 

Lucina

Member
I guess when I love them it's maybe in the manner of a parent, who wants her kid to be happy and healthy and therefore tells him to clean his room and brush his teeth, and sends him off to school. And I want to hear that he's wonderful sizzling hott 2 online, but if he misbehaves or has a fever or whatever, I need to know it.
 

H.Brown

WF Veterans
Hi Lucina, while I like the sentiment behind your statement but I don't see how it reltes to the Op. Can you explain it further in way of critiques?
I guess when I love them it's maybe in the manner of a parent, who wants her kid to be happy and healthy and therefore tells him to clean his room and brush his teeth, and sends him off to school. And I want to hear that he's wonderful sizzling hott 2 online, but if he misbehaves or has a fever or whatever, I need to know it.
 

sarahvdan

Member
I love glowing reviews. Who doesn't? But I also know that the positive ones, however nice, aren't as useful as the negative. It's hard to know whether praise is because the work is really that good or if someone is being nice. I don't believe I've ever written a first draft that couldn't use some sort of tweaking, so to get a handful of positive responses doesn't really do me much good.
 

TMarie

Senior Member
Returning to WF after many moons, the sticky notes in this forum section is a great place for me to re-enter. The last critique I received here was excellent, however I felt the need to defend and explain what I wrote. The person giving me their critique was not asking for an explanation in any way, but that was lost on me at the time. I'm slowly learning to take that pause before reacting and responding, not only to writing critiques, but also to life in general.
 

indianroads

Staff member
Global Moderator
On sites such as WF I'll only ask for a crits regarding the blurb (used on the back cover and Amazon product description) because it's short and to the point. If I need something longer I'll go a beta reader or my editor. My view is that asking someone to review / critique a 3000-4000 word chapter, especially if it's out of context, is just too much to ask of even a wonderful site like WF.

Without screening where the critique is coming from we could end up with some who dislikes the genre of the piece, or doesn't understand or relate to the theme of the story.

Although it's probably unnecessary, I always add that I bruise easily and ask the reviewer to be gentle. The feedback I've received has always been valuable and greatly appreciated.

BTW - I have a blurb up for crit down in Publishing -> Publishing Discussion -> Query...
 

R. A. Busby

Senior Member
On sites such as WF I'll only ask for a crits regarding the blurb (used on the back cover and Amazon product description) because it's short and to the point. If I need something longer I'll go a beta reader or my editor. My view is that asking someone to review / critique a 3000-4000 word chapter, especially if it's out of context, is just too much to ask of even a wonderful site like WF.

Without screening where the critique is coming from we could end up with some who dislikes the genre of the piece, or doesn't understand or relate to the theme of the story.

Although it's probably unnecessary, I always add that I bruise easily and ask the reviewer to be gentle. The feedback I've received has always been valuable and greatly appreciated.

BTW - I have a blurb up for crit down in Publishing -> Publishing Discussion -> Query...

Yes -- I've definitely seen that on places like Reddit or Scribophile where readers -- well-meaning ones, of course -- say, "I don't see the point of this character interaction in this chapter," and in my head I'm all, "But it feeds into something important later!" How, of course, are they to know that? :D
 

NoFuchsGiven

Senior Member
I had previously been a member of a similar forum to this.

From what you have said you sound like you are genuinely offering your opinion and an honest critique.

The problem sounds as though the people you are offering the critique to do not posses the thick skin required to take another persons' opinion.

I found that some people would say in their post "I'm new to this so please be kind" or "I've got thick skin, don't go soft" so that people knew before they tore them a new one.

When people argue with the people offering them help and guidance it annoys me. It's like "here is my work, let me know what you think..." so you tell them your opinion and then they say "no. your wrong. your opinion is wrong."

Anyway, keep offering help and being honest.

NFG
 
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