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Saturday, 1 May 2010

Do you feel lucky?

Writing can be a lonely pursuit, but I always feel that for a time, the characters keep me company. However, when the first draft is written I often sit there and sway between "this is a masterpiece" or "this should be scrapped". I am sure I am not alone!

But I am lucky, I have a wonderful best friend who acts as 'first reader'. He is brutally honest about my writing, he tells me in black and white what works and what doesn't. See, feedback is essential. It is wonderful to hear all the praise, but it is just as necessary to hear what is wrong. Recently, on a WIP, my reader told me 'this character is just totally unbelievable and is ruining the book'. Thank you. I think I knew that, but I wasn't sure how to fix it. It keeps me on my toes, helps me progress and I am sure that I am a better writing because of this criticism.

So, am I alone in cherishing the brutally honest review? who do you have? Do you rely on yourself or have someone who is totally honest about your writing?


  1. The only people who have ever shown any interest in my work enough to read it and give critique are the members of Slush Pile Reader and Authonomy. You are lucky to have someone who will do that for you and be honest. There is no doubt that an honest critique certainly helps.
    Oh, and by the way, for those who don't know what WIP is-it means work in progress. We forget not all people reading this are writers.

  2. I'm another spawny bleeder in that I have a writing group who are pretty honest - but possibly not quite brutal enough. But we only read excerpts to each other... as far as reading the whole book goes I'm with Lorraine, no one will do that for me... so, a bit of seething with insane jealousy going on over here...