Thursday, July 31, 2008

Love the Husband

A mean critiquer was mean to me.

I feel like a school girl who just beat up by bullies. Big ones.

She said my writing was wrong and she had no idea how to fix it.

She made fun of me for using the word "was" three time in one paragraph.

She didn't understand why a world literature teacher would be teaching her students about Egypt.

She was "a bit flailing" as to what to say.

She said at one point in my writing "I just went 'ewwwww'." (direct quote)

My characters are, apparently, unemotional.

I told my husband on her.

He told me to pray and to think about Jesus and puppies and to not worry about it because God loves me and Jesus would totally read my book and you know, get it. Oh, and he reminded me of 2 Kings 2:23-24.

I love it when God makes bears eat mean people.


Unknown said...

PS, In case you can't follow the link for some reason, here's the Good Word. I think the KJV really sets the tone, don't you?

2 Kings 2:23-24

23And he went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head.

24And he turned back, and looked on them, and cursed them in the name of the LORD. And there came forth two she bears out of the wood, and tare forty and two children of them.

PS, PS: Don't worry about me! I'm fine, really I am--just thought that a bit of God-smiting from the Bible made my bad critique experience a bit of a laugh :)

christine M said...

hee hee. Sic them bears on bad critiquers.

And the thing is that a good critique is not supposed to be mean. Critical does not equal mean.

So - basically, don't let the turkey's get you down.

And if they do - let God sic some bears on them.

PJ Hoover said...

Mean critiquers don't at all do anything for the writing universe. All they do is tell us what unhappy people they are. I mean seriously, who acts this way? Who would actually spout off "writerly advice" like this and think they've done something good for the world.

So sorry you had to go through this mess.

Can you never critique with this person again?

Unknown said...

No worries; I'm much more cheerful about it now. I don't have to work with that person directly (it's online), so no worries. And she might have meant well--I did ask for honesty, after all!

spcpthook said...

The good news is...with that particular reviewer if you don't return her crit she will go away. Unless we're in the middle of a crit marathon where she'll crit a hundred pieces and complain on her blog that nobody returns them. My experience has been that she seems to skim what she's reading and doesn't try to comprehend. If five other people get it and she doesn't that should say something but there are many other problems in her crits.

I've learned to ignore her during the marathon and drop the crit without even reading because so often I end up thinking did she read somebody else's story??? It's too bad because she occasionally has insight worth reading but it's not worth being irritated the rest of the day.

Unknown said...

In addition to knowing the coolest Bible verse ever, my husband helped me to see what was good about the crit. My opening DOES need work (as several people pointed out), and she did have some great points to make...I just got bogged down in the negative and needed a little help seeing the light again.

And, as I keep reminding myself, I DO want honest reviews, which means I need to be able to accept negative ones. And it's not like the person was attacking me--just my writing. I probably shouldn't have written a blog post the minute I read the critique :) I feel much more calm now, have rewritten three pages of a new opening, and, in all honesty, those three pages are probably better because of the negative crit.

Unknown said...

Oh, yeah--just realized who you were spcpthook! It was your comments that got me thinking about a new beginning for my book--THANKS!

Keri Mikulski said...

Ouch.. Sorry.. That's really crappy and should never happen. I've been a victim of it myself many moons ago. The particular 'author' is not published. (sticks tongue out at 'author'). Keep smiling and keep writing and forget the negativity. You are an awesome writer. :)

Tabitha said...

Okay, yeah, you wanted honesty. But honesty doesn't have to be mean. There's this thing called constructive criticism that this critiquer should go check out. :)

I think we've all had critiques like this, and they hurt. So I'm glad to hear you're feeling better and shaking it off. :) If it makes you feel even better, go through her crit and cross out the harmful comments with a big ol' permanent marker, then see what's left. Maybe there's something helpful, maybe not. But at least you don't have to look at the mean comments anymore! :)