1. B-Gas
    Offline

    B-Gas Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2007
    Messages:
    330
    Likes Received:
    14

    How to Be Reviewed.

    Discussion in 'The Art of Critique' started by B-Gas, Jun 15, 2009.

    Unfortunately, this isn't about suckering people into reviewing your work.

    When you are reviewed, it hurts. People point out flaws, people miss major points, and people rarely if ever notice the little bits of brilliance that you saw when you were writing it. Sometimes, people don't actually review you, they just repost your post and add "I liked it" or something similar. Other times, they take you line by line, breaking it apart, destroying the flow that you worked so hard on.

    There is only one acceptable response.

    "Thank you!"

    Yes, they missed the point. Yes, they aimed at the easy targets. Of course they didn't see that your vampire was actually a vampire-werewolf, and they couldn't know that half of it was written a year ago when you were writing a completely different story.

    But justifying problems or issues only says, "Well, that's not actually a problem, you idiot." And yes, it is insulting to find that your reasoned, objective criticism is CLEARLY something they already saw and know about and have justified. Pointing out that the reviewer missed something says, "Well, that's clearly not a problem if you'd actually gone through and read it properly, like a normal person." They read it like a normal person. If they missed something, maybe you didn't draw attention to it enough? Or maybe they were skimming an impenetrable block of paragraphy and couldn't see the two words that justify the existence of a knife in the hitman's left boot?

    It makes that reviewer less likely to come back and review something else by you, because they know that any problems they point out that aren't mechanical SPAG errors are just justified things that they can't see. It also makes it very difficult for you to see that the problems are actual problems that people have pointed out. They might be justified, but they're still errors in the eyes of the reviewer. That means that you have to change them so that they aren't errors.

    Suck it up, people. You asked for help. This is not a time to justify the problems. This is a time to see them as things people see as problems, and work on fixing them.

    Then, maybe, we can make some progress.
     
  2. Tobinobin
    Offline

    Tobinobin Member

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2008
    Messages:
    85
    Likes Received:
    3
    Very good post. My problem is my stories are too big(near 18 pages) that people wont review it lol.
     
  3. ManhattanMss
    Offline

    ManhattanMss Contributing Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2009
    Messages:
    626
    Likes Received:
    14

    Well said, B-Gas. Most typical readers are only going to give a story a single chance to succeed; so we best pay attention to what readers in a forum like this are generous (and brave) enough to share.
     
  4. Wreybies
    Offline

    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 1, 2008
    Messages:
    18,834
    Likes Received:
    10,013
    Location:
    Puerto Rico
    1) Do some reviews of your own. Many forum members like myself will scan a member's prior posts to see if they actively review. If all they do is the minimum, then that is exactly how I feel about reviewing them.

    2) Check your work through a spell checker and have someone go over it with a grammarian eye before you post it. Work that is mechanically flawed is impossible to get through. It does matter. When I see people post things like, "I know it's probably full of mistakes, I just want to know if I am getting my point across," the answer is NO, you are not getting your point across because I was unable to focus on any points for all the SPaG.

    3) As the OP has already mentioned, be gracious in the getting of a critique. Even if you think it was a god-awful critique, be gracious. Many people are new to the idea of critiquing, they are nervous about putting their opinions out there, and you are just going to scare them off to no one's benefit. Being gracious and saying thank you will get you more critiques in the end.

    4) Be ready to get a different point of view. You wrote it, you know what you meant. The reader is now going to tell you what you said. If the two don't match, then have another pass at what you wrote.
     
  5. B-Gas
    Offline

    B-Gas Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2007
    Messages:
    330
    Likes Received:
    14
    Wonderfully said, Wreybries. Especially the point on saying versus meaning.
     

Share This Page