Thursday, September 29, 2016

Dealing with reviews

Dealing with reviews and people who criticize us is not easy. It can seriously affect our mood and make the process of writing less enjoyable.

For some reason the people who easily praises and cheers for a novel musician, painter or sculptor becomes much more hurtful and tough when reviewing the first works of a creative writer.

It is not easy to spot a compulsive critic, one of those who actually think their opinion is more important than the work they are reviewing. Maybe that behavior finds its origin in the school years when literature teachers would ask the class for their opinion on a text, which would be read out loud. This usually deviated into mean spirited, senseless and undeserved attacks.

Free reviews are usually baseless. We can laugh about it or dismiss it. It might be useful sometimes. An amateur opinion sometimes can unwillingly bring a different point of view.

A review that is openly derogatory, hostile and which totally lacks recognition towards the work of the author will undoubtedly put us in defensive mode. These kinds of opinions have less to do with your own story than with that of the supposed “critic”.

A surprisingly high number of people, even some beyond their teenage years, still think that negative opinions make them sound more intelligent. It is good to remember that anyone can look into a Picasso and say: “The pictures I made at kindergarten when I was three were better than that!” To appreciate something requires education.

We all need to know how good our writing is. If you do not have an editor or trusted beta readers find yourself a good peer review group, one focused on your own genre if possible. A good review is a priceless gift. You will appreciate it when you hear one. It will provide you with a moment of clarity that will allow you to improve your story.

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