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How to use a writing critique : Editor's Notes #195
September 30, 2015
Hello,

Take what you need and leave the rest.
--A.A.


In this issue:

1. How to use a writing critique
2. Tickled my funnybone
3. Interesting Web site
4. Writing prompt

1. How to use a writing critique
Although I've come across a few writers who assumed their writing was so brilliant that no one could teach them anything, most writers are more realistic. Most writers know that good critique will improve their writing, and most writers want their writing to be as good as it can be.

If you are ready for a writing critique, give careful thought to the person you ask. The person should be knowledgeable about your genre, your topic, your audience. The person should have clear communication. It is usually best to have someone who can be objective. Someone who knows you intimately may not be the best person to critique your writing. If your skin is thin, choose a gentle soul. If you are ready for no-holds-barred engagement with your text, the personality of the reader is not as important.

A thorough critique can hurt even the stoutest heart. That's because those words you wrote came from your soul, and any criticism of those words feels like a knife in your soul.

So, first of all, admit to yourself that some parts of the critique will probably sting.

Next, make sure that you understand what the comments mean. Ask when you are unclear about anything written or said to you about your writing.

Then, be quiet. This is your writing, and you do not have to justify it to anyone. In fact, trying to justify what you've written will only keep you from making your text better. Once you understand the comments you've been given, interaction about the critique is over.

Your next step is to wait. Wait a day, a week, longer if you can. In that waiting time, your subconscious sorts out what you've learned about how your writing comes across to someone else, someone you chose, for good reasons, to give you feedback.

Finally, take what you need to make your writing better, and put it to work polishing your project until it is truly brilliant.

Editing can be a form of critique. I'd be honoured to offer a critique of your work if that's what you want.

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2.Tickled my funnybone
There was the person who sent ten puns to friends, with the hope that at least one of the puns would make them laugh. No pun in ten did.

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3. Interesting Web site
Advice to Writers posts quotes as well as links to articles about and by published writers.
http://www.advicetowriters.com/

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4. Writing prompt
Write a short piece. In the first sentence, use the word manners. In the main body of the piece, use the word acrid. The last sentence should contain the word conglomerate.

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