Monday, November 14, 2005

Red Ink is Your Friend...Really!

Okay, have to admit, got that "title" from my crit bud, Ron! :)

Here's the thing.....why are we so afraid of crits? Is it putting our stuff out there for people to read and give our opinions of that scares us silly? I just don't get it. If we can't take it from our buds or paid critters, how are we ever going to face it from an agent/editor? SIGH. Crits can make us better writers, stronger writers, and make our stories really shine. Isn't that what every writer SHOULD want?


Heather Diane Tipton said...

wait... we are supposed to have people crit our stuff???? :-o LOL

Heather Smith said...

Good reminder, Robin! I'll remember that the next time I'm bleeding from a tough crit!

Ron Estrada said...

It's important to remember, though, that a crit is an opinion. It's up to the writer to decide how much merit to give to each critique. I think a new writer has a tendancy to change everything that his or her crit partners point out. As you grow, though, your instincts sharpen.

Robin is very good at catching all the "tells." Now, we all know the rule of "show don't tell." But we also know the rule that all rules aren't carved in stone. I still have to decide wether the "tell" is the better way to write my scene or not.

Ronie, my other critter, catches all the things that don't make sense, like seeing a character's hands when they're standing someplace where you shouldn't be able to see their hands.

Dineen is my "big picture" critter. She'll let me know if the story or scene is working.

But, again, I have to make the final decision. Crit partners are a second, third, and fourth set of eyes, but they're not writing the book. If you let them, the writing will fall flat.

Paula said...

Great post and great comments. I think the single biggest factor in my growth as a writer has been my crit group. But there have been some times I lost my voice, myself really, as I listened too much to other people's opinions.

Robin Caroll said...

Right, Ron...that's exactly what I'm saying. Now we can all change our typos and tense errors when pointed out, but the CONTEXT value is the opinion of a critter. And you hit the nail on the head, writers we must remain true to our own voice. For instance, I got a crit back from my buddies yesterday. To begin with, I made a bunch of obvious mistakes. If they're so obvious, why didn't I see them? LOL Because we're too close to our work, is the main reason we miss them. But there were some non-minor things that when pointed out, I was like.."oh yeah". LOL

And therein is the crux of my point...finding crit partners who can "hear" your voice and recognize your style and being able to trust them when they tell you "nope, not this". :)

CHickey said...

"Criters" are our friends! Robin is great! I use to have others, but they all got busy! Writing, I hope!

Not Ronie said...

WHY are we afraid of crist? Anyone who has had a crit by Robin knows the answer to that. LOL JUST KIDDING!!! Hehehe.

Love you, girl!!

Not Ronie said...

Oh, geez. You got me so nervous I can't spell "crits." LOL