The Pyrenees---Southern France

The Pyrenees---Southern France

Thursday, February 20, 2014

At Laaast

        What do you want from a friend/colleague when it comes to feedback? Do you want complete honesty--even if it's brutal--or would you rather have comments that are just semi-honest?

        This morning I finally finished the first draft of my NaNoWriMo 2012/2013 manuscript. I already had a beta reader (I had to look that term up to find out what in the heck it meant I've been lucky to work with the same beta reader for many years) who was chomping at the bit to get it. Who knows why...perhaps she's a glutton for punishment?

         I do have a self-imposed deadline. At the end of March I'm going to Conception, Missouri for a DIY writing retreat. My plan: to have some constructive feedback in my pocket, so I can do some serious revising.

      My beta reader and I skyped last night. We discussed what we both value when it comes to critique. This is Sioux's Guide to What Every Writer Needs:

  •  Tell me when the story gets sucky. I don't mind big X's across a page, and I know this 82,000-word monstrosity has some parts that suck. Big time suck. 

  • Tell me when I've discovered the cure for insomnia--through my writing. If my story gets sluggish or boring, let me know. I've got thick skin. My name is written on bathroom stalls by third graders, and I'm pleased when they spell the colorful words correctly. (That "tch" blend is oh-so important...)

  • If you don't care about my characters, tell me.  This story was a way to work out some personal issues, so perhaps I am the only one who cares... 
        What do you want when it comes to feedback? Inquiring (and worn out) minds want to know...