1. Fluxhavok
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    Fluxhavok Active Member

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    Pfft, Critics...

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Fluxhavok, Jul 23, 2008.

    So how does one go about becoming a book/literary critic? do you have to have some specific sort of literary degree? who died and made their opinion so freakin' invaluable? Sometimes it seems that all that is required of a critic is a superiority complex and a pissy attitude.

    "Critics think theirs is a profession which allows one a certain license to be vicious outside the bounds of normal civilized behavior. One would never tell someone that their life's work is a "piece of hot stinky garbage", face to face, in private, but the critic thinks nothing of making the same pronouncement to the whole world as if he were performing a high moral duty."
    -can't remember who said that


    "Those who can't do, teach, and those who can't teach critique."
    -Yussef Hollander (HS English teacher)


    My friend just got a book published, after years of editing, and some buttmonkey critic went out of his way to really insult his work. what a dirty butt eater... I wonder what people would think of shakespeare were he a member of generation x. I wonder what kind of reviews he would get.
     
  2. mmorsepfd
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    mmorsepfd Member

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    Consider the critic. If his words serve no purpose other than self agrandization (I don't even know if that is a word) then disregard whatever they say. If they have a point, well, maybe there is some room for improvement.

    One man's trash is another man's treasure, you can't keep everybody happy.
     
  3. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Like movie critics, many of them are paid to entertain. People may grit their teeth at Simon Cowell, but they gleefully watch as he tears someone to shreds. So it is with movie and book critics in mass media.

    That's not to say they are necessarily ignorant schmucks either. Even a literary vulture may find real, valid criticisms in a book he or she decimates; so the details of the review--assuming there are details--may be more useful than the final verdict.
     
  4. Ore-Sama
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    Ore-Sama Senior Member

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    A critic's value to a writer depends on what kind of writer your friend is: the critic's man, or does he care more about what the general public thinks? If it's the former, then a review like that could be potentialy devestating to his confidence. If it's the later, he won't care much.
     
  5. NaCl
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    NaCl Contributing Member Contributor

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    I would hope so as I distinguish between a "Critic" and a "Reviewer".

    IMHO, a true "critic" should be a person with exceptional credentials in literature, not necessarily a successful author. This person should possess a high level of training in every aspect of literature from basic SPAG to plot development to characterization and character development -- all the technical skills to dissect a story.

    On the other hand, I feel anyone can be a "reviewer", as this role allows them to express their personal "likes" and "dislikes" with regard to the writing and may not take into consideration technical details. Tom Clancy once said that it is not necessary to be a great writer to be successful; rather, one only needs to be a great story teller. A critic and a reviewer might come to very different opinions about his writing.

    I think the credentials of a bona fide "critic" are claimed by some who are actually "reviewers", overstepping the role.

    Just my $.02
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    no, you don't... check out the bios of a few well-known critics and you'll see their backgrounds are varied... as are the ways and means that got them to be hailed as critics...
     
  7. Gears
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    Gears Member

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    When it comes down to it, nobody should give a care about the critics. People write about what they like and they write how they like. Most critics are really just paid to pan little things (art, music, movies, books, etc.) but love the moneymakers. What are people going to care more about? A review of a Harry Potter book, or a review about The Shadow King (not a bad book)?
     
  8. coalminersdaughter
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    coalminersdaughter Member

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    I'm interested to read your friend's book now...got any info?
     

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