1. cazann34
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    cazann34 Active Member

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    Finished or working progress?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by cazann34, Nov 25, 2013.

    I'm curious when you post excerpts on the forum is it a working progress or is it an excerpt from a finished piece? Are you posting to get feedback on incomplete projects? Or have you finished but want feedback about a particular character/plot line or the need advice about the pieces general pace? Mine is the latter. Most of what I post are complete stories and I post for feedback. I don't worry about about not being able to publish any of them because I know I'm not ready for that step yet?

    This may seem like a dump question but I'd like to know the ratio of what people post, incomplete or finished.
     
  2. TessaT
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    TessaT Contributing Member

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    The only review I've posted was from a short story, that was/is incomplete. I wasn't really sure where to go with it, so I was looking for feedback.
     
  3. DrWhozit
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    DrWhozit Banned

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    Of course, I'm a new member, still I've critiqued a few pieces that are works in progress. It doesn't seem to matter, nonetheless it's easier to give a higher quality review when reading thoroughly written and edited work. Nobody should read a writer's work more than the writer.
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    There is no point in getting critiques for a finished piece. A critique suggests ways to improve the writing.

    A review is a rating, and is at least as worthless as it sounds for anything but an ego-massage.

    By the way, the term is work in progress, not working progress.
     
  5. DrWhozit
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    DrWhozit Banned

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    Hmmm... I could be wrong in this, but I certainly hope to get some critique on my finished work of any form so I don't end up embarrassing myself in the publishing or exhibition phase. Classic rib from one painter to another: "You missed a spot!"
     
  6. Okon
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    Okon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Then it's not really finished. What if it's more than just a word here or an inconsistency there? Not to mention, that 'painter' you mentioned could be anywhere from a Picasso to a... really bad painter. And you might not even like Picasso!
     
  7. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    If you are still open to making changes, it is a work in progress. If you have said,"Come Hell or high sewage, I'm not gonna change another word of this! I've submitted this, and if it isn't accepted, I'll give it up as a life lesson and move on to my next project," then there's no point im seeking critique. If it is already locked into publication, there is also no point in requesting critique. You're better off getting critique on a new piece that you aren't burned out on.
     
  8. DrWhozit
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    DrWhozit Banned

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    Now THIS is finished work...
     
  9. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I haven't posted in the workshop because I get as much feedback as I can address in the local critique group I'm a member of. But my stuff is definitely a work in progress.

    Some of the members, though, do bring finished pieces for some polishing up.
     
  10. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    I'll add to what @Cogito said. He's right. There is no point in submitting something for critique if you're absolutely positive it's perfect and will refuse to change a single thing.

    However, just because a piece is 'finished' doesn't mean it shouldn't be critiqued. I define 'finished' as meaning you've completed telling your story, done a preliminary edit and fixed the stuff you think needed fixing.

    THEN put it out there for critique. You won't know whether your story works for other people, until you ask. However, then you need to be openminded and take constructive feedback on board. By that I don't mean you need to make all the changes people suggest, but do listen and be willing to make changes that make sense to you.

    I find it frustrating to constantly be asked to critique 'first chapters' when the second chapter hasn't even been started yet, and the story is little more than a light bulb going off above the writer's head. How can I tell what needs to be changed (beyond spelling, grammar and opening lines) when I don't know where your story is headed? That's like asking somebody to help you write the thing, which is a lot different from 'feedback' for a completed story.

    Okay to ask for help if you get stuck on a wee point during the writing process, but it's your story. And until you've written it, we can't really know whether it works.

    Of course if you've written a novel, you can't use this forum to post it in its entirety. And we're constantly being told that posting a 'finished' short story or poem (or any other piece of writing) means you can't ever get it published. So I suppose the forum is of limited use for critiques, really—despite its stated purpose. So ...back to critiquing spelling, grammar and opening lines...
     
  11. DrWhozit
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    DrWhozit Banned

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    I agree with this. Reviews are for the critics post partum. "Oh! Isn't she precious.." = "I'd never take that freak out in public if I were you."

    @jannert,
    Ditto
     
  12. Renee J
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    Renee J Contributing Member

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    I've only read the reviews, but it appears there are different types of reviews. Some are for sentence structure and grammar. Some are for the plot and characters. If it's a review of the plot or the characters, you probably want to do that early in the writing process. Because you'll end up rewriting everything anyway. When you already have a solid plot and characters, the review for grammar and punctuation can happen. (Though, it doesn't hurt to correct these early on, too.)
     
  13. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    There's done and there's DONE! One means you've completed it but there's still major flaws, the other means it's ready for the publishers, babe!
    Most of my works that I post here are done. With the exception of novels.
    I've posted four incomplete short stories - The house on the Moon, The Ghosting, Alice's Things, and Two Hughs. And I've posted snippets from four novels in progress - Moonlight, my advantage, The Dolls, A Noir Revenge piece and Untitled Road Trip. The 18 other pieces I've posted are all 'finished' be they short stories or poems.

    When I first started here about a year and a half ago, I wrote my first short story ever, specifically to be critiqued. I think I spent like eight drafts polishing and tightening. And there are still major flaws in it. :rolleyes:Fortunately now, I only need 1 draft to get to the same major flaws - lol. ;)

    Usually what I post now are polished first drafts and I'm looking more for story/character flaws and technical errors. It's hard to get overall story advice. What I mean is most pieces on here are less than 3 pages long. Take the wrong three pages out of any book and critiquers could say, you're going too slow, there's too much description, the character is boring. Is it accurate for what you're trying to accomplish? What I'd rather hear is your sentences are dragging, your description is focused on the wrong thing, your character needs to have a goal. Specifics for the piece that you can relate to the overall work.
     
  14. cazann34
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    cazann34 Active Member

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  15. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    My manager at a previous (support desk) job would ask whether a case was Done or Done, Done, Done.
     
    peachalulu likes this.

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