Criticism. I’m sure that every one of you is familiar with it. It’s when we hear peoples’ thoughts about our outfit, behavior, lifestyle, or our manuscript. Whichever is the case, the fact is that criticism is never pleasant. But critiques are good and necessary for us in order to be improved. And that’s why we should treat criticism with respect and learn to earn from it. Critiques are gold and it’s time for us to understand it.
It’s been almost two weeks since I signed up in a critique group and I am excited about it. At first I was afraid, but I wanted to know what people think about my novel and so I submitted the first chapter. I was waiting anxiously to read my first critique and when that happened, my heart was pounding as I was reading those lines. As I kept reading, my emotions were changing fast; surprise, disappointment, sadness, understanding, hope, excitement, happiness. By the time I reached at the end of that text, I knew this was a good thing. This person had spent her precious time, not only reading, but pointing out to me, what she didn’t understand, what she liked and didn’t like. That was good. Then the second critique came and it made me happier. Not because this critique was telling me that my chapter was amazing, but because the person who wrote it, showed me more things that I should pay attention to. She told me about punctuation, grammar, syntax and I needed those things. Critiques kept coming and every one of them had something different to add, something that I hadn’t noticed, or something that I knew I had to fix.
Of course I don’t expect them to edit my whole novel, but they are extremely helpful. They are taking me by the hand and show me the way. That’s what I call support. I do the same for their entries too and I help as much as I can. I may not correct punctuation, but I can tell them my thoughts as a reader and I do the best I can. After all, readers are the hardest of the judges, right?
What I love in the critique group so far, is that people are kind and polite. They write their thoughts carefully wanting to help you and not hurt your feelings. They know how hard it is to write a novel and how hard it is to polish it, make it the best possible. That is really important. They approach your work nicely and they really do the best they can. How beautiful is this?
However, I would probably be lost in the editing world if it weren’t for Nadine Ducca. She was the one who told me how to join a critique group and how to start there. So, a big, big thank you to Nadine. She is a Sci-fi author and here is her amazing blog. You should definitely check it out. :)
So, how do you cope with criticism? Are you in a critique group? Please share your thoughts with me.This is my first post about criticism and I am sure that many will follow.
Happy st. Patrick's day!!