Wednesday, October 27, 2010

C'mon if you think you're hard enough....

“I love criticism just so long as it's unqualified praise.” ~ Noel Coward

When I put my first novel out for review, I learned more about myself than I could have possibly expected, and less about the direction of my writing career than I had hoped...

The problem with putting your work out for critique is this: You're going to receive some criticism.

And even if you 'meant to do that' - you absolutely cannot please everyone, and that's just a fact. Nor should you try. If you find you're getting feedback from betas and reviewers that solidly shows that you're hitting some universal buttons, then that's a good thing. Take the lesson and move on.

I think everyone has their own internal coping mechanism for dealing with criticism. If not, you'd better find one quick. And if you can't find one that works for you, you probably shouldn't be writing. In fact, you're best off sitting quietly in a dark room while attempting nothing more complicated than normal metabolic processes.

We must read the notes from our betas and editors, but how do you handle reviews from readers and literary reviewers? Do you read them? Do you seethe silently wishing you could respond, even though you know it's a bad idea. Or do you pretend they don't exist?

1 comment:

  1. Can't answer from personal experience, never having had the energy to complete the brilliant first novels whose outline came to me while I stood in the shower, but it used to be accepted that authors could revise their written work much as classical composers did. Evelyn Waugh for example revised "Brideshead Revisited" nearly 20 years after he had first written it.

    So, were a reader to suggest something that would improve your original effort, would you not consider giving them a credit in the acknowledgements section of the second edition?

    But if the criticism is non-constructive, then I think you would be justified in reporting them to the FBI as suspected paedophiles.