1. InkDancer
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    InkDancer Senior Member

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    The Perfect Review

    Discussion in 'The Art of Critique' started by InkDancer, Jul 1, 2008.

    What do you consider the perfect review?

    I don't mean a review that says your work is perfect. But what information are you looking for in a review?

    I love being able to sit next to someone as they read and watch their reactions. (As long as that someone is one of the three people that I'm not totally embarrassed to do that with.) I'm sure they get mad at me when I keep asking, "what part were you on?" when they react somehow.
     
  2. Lucy E.
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    Lucy E. Contributing Member

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    Hmmm...I like reviews that are helpful, constructive, and tell me where I can improve. I also like to receive comments regarding my plot as well as my writing. It annoys me when, in spite of the fact that I state my location as 'Port Talbot, South Wales, UK' (which should suggest that I'm British and therefore use British spelling and grammar), people constantly 'correct' my British spelling. I don't understand why, if they're unsure of whether it's correct, they don't check before telling me it's wrong. So in my perfect review, I wouldn't receive a list of words I've spelt 'incorrectly' (colour/color, travelling/traveling, and the like). I also like to hear what the reviewer has enjoyed, if anything, so that I have a rough idea of what I need to work on the most.
    In short, in a review, I like:

    - Suggestions as to where and how I can improve
    - Spelling/punctuation/grammar corrections (except ones in which I'm told that my BRITISH spelling/grammar/punc. is incorrect)
    - Comments on the plot
    - Comments on the characters
    - What the reviewer liked and disliked the most
    - Helpful, contructive criticism

    I've probably left out a few things there, but I'll come back and add more if I think of anything else.
     
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  3. Rebekkamaria
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    Rebekkamaria Senior Member

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    To me, perfect review contains the thoughts and feelings of the reviewer. It’s wonderful to receive the inner dialogue of the reviewer. Of course I like corrections, suggestions, things that were perfect, things that were less than perfect… all the things Lucy already mentioned. But the most important thing for me is the feel of the story, the way it makes the reader feel. Because I’m an emotional reader myself, I’m always so very happy when someone responds with feeling.

    Also, one thing that I adore about reviews is the personal touch of said reviewer. If the reviewer gives me something of her/himself, it makes me feel utterly grateful. I’ve received reviews (for my slash stories) where guys have told me: “You’ve just described something I hope to experience someday. I feel like it’s possible for me to find someone like that. I feel good about been gay just now.” :-D At times like that, I remember why I work so hard to achieve this dream.
     
  4. FantasyWitch
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    FantasyWitch Contributing Member

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    Lucy said it right :D
     
  5. Lucy E.
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    Lucy E. Contributing Member

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    Wow, two people mentioned my name in their posts - AND AGREED WITH ME! I feel special. ;) Lol.
     
  6. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    You may laugh, Lucy, but you have quite nicely summarized what makes an ideal review. I had nothing to add.

    Kudos.

    No need to blush, either. :)
     
  7. Lucy E.
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    Lucy E. Contributing Member

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    Aw! Shucks! Lol!
    I feel very special. :D
     
  8. Sato Ayako
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    Sato Ayako Contributing Member

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    For me, there's no real "perfect" review because for me, "perfect" is relative.

    For example, let's say I post a story that I know has something wrong with it but I just can't figure it out. The perfect review will point out that problem. It'll suddenly just click.

    Or, since I usually know what the major problems are in a piece (but I second guess myself), a perfect review for a piece like that would be a comment or two that either supported or didn't support what I felt.

    Luce, you've got a pretty good summary of what might constitute a general "perfect" review. I personally don't really like commentary on spelling or grammar (comments on punctuation are really helpful, though!) because I know how to spell--and if I haven't caught the error already, I will--and sometimes I experiment with grammar for different effect. Some reviewers notice that and may make a general comment, but in my experience, most don't.

    Of course, any review received should be taken with at least a thank you, even if you didn't find anything helpful at all.
     
  9. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    I don't care, as long as I get reviewed, means people might have read it, and that's all I'm really bothered about.
    Though, I take account of the criticism.
     
  10. FlakeandFins
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    FlakeandFins Contributing Member

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    Actually Ink, your review of "New Coats" was excellent. It reminded me of my creative writing classes and it helped give me perspective into the reader's mind. So a review like that is pretty close to perfect in my book. Now if I get more than 10 minutes away from my work, I'll be able to actually apply it and edit the draft.
     
  11. InkDancer
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    InkDancer Senior Member

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    You're making me blush at work. :redface: Thanks!
     

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