This week, I’ve had an entry in the Are You Hooked? critique round over at the Write On! blog. To be honest, the critiques on my entry weren’t favourable. For the past few weeks, I’d been exploring a new idea (yes, I’m aware I’m supposed to be editing) in a different style to what I usually write. It’s an exciting new idea and I’ve been having fun with it. So, when I got several “I’m not hooked” critiques, I was initially a bit disappointed.
‘Oh. I guess no one likes my writing.’
I’ve posted on this topic about a month ago, but I think it’s worth revisiting. A bad critique does not mean you’re a bad writer. It’s not a personal attack. A bad critique simply means that the story is no good. I’m sure I’m not the only person who gets the odd dud idea.
When you open yourself up for critiques, it’s vital that you keep in mind that it’s subjective. What Person A likes may not be the same as what Person B likes. Each person favours different styles of writing, and enjoy different genres, and this shows in the critiquing. I found this while I was giving critiques: if I didn’t enjoy a particular genre, I was more likely to not be hooked.
When you get a bad critique, I think it’s best not to respond right away, or even respond at all. Give yourself some time to digest the critique and think about what the person said. After a while you’ll come to realise that what they said is actually true! Only once you realise this should you respond to any critique, if you like.
For the comments: how do you handle bad critiques? Let me know!