Friday, June 11, 2010

Gaining a thicker skin...

When I wrote my very first chapter for the very first time (LOL), I let my husband read it. I think I've mentioned before that he was very brave in actually telling me what he thought didn't work. I believe I've gotten much better at accepting critique since that time. In fact, I've actually come to welcome it from my group. I've gotten a lot of good ideas from them on how to make the manuscript better.

The majority of us are attending a writer's retreat next weekend. It is scary, yet exciting at the same time, that another set of writers is going to review my reworked three chapters. Since they haven't read what comes next, I'm looking forward to hearing what they think of the beginning, if that makes sense. It also will be good because, as Ellen wrote, a lot of time friends and family give you an overall, "yes, we like it," without too many specifics. These folks at the weekend are fresh eyes who actually are required to fill out a questionnaire.

Of course, that means I have to fill out theirs too, which is why I am going to keep this short. I've got to get to it!


  1. that is good your husband at least tries to give constructive feedback. i have shared only a couple things with my husband and he mostly just says he likes it, might offer one suggestion. and i have shared only one short story with my mom and a couple friends. they aren't critical at all, just say they like it. But i would say more than 95% of what i write gets shared with no one other than my critique group, and that is if i have managed to get the work into presentable form. i don't think submitting to contests counts--you don't hear anything if you don't "win," so it's not particularly helpful--was your stuff in actual consideration or was it met with "yuck!"? When i was in high school and college, i was much more easygoing about having other people read my stuff--i wrote specifically for hundreds of other people to read--newspaper, lit magazine. Where did the trepidation begin?

  2. It IS a ittle scary to let retreat people read our stuff - what if they don't know the "play nice" rule??