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How Much Should Critique Affect You?

Ahavati
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inechoingsilence said:

Let's see. I'm almost 41, have 4 kids with special needs, and live in an ultra Orthodox community where I have to write under a pen name so no one might say anything negative to my husband or kids. I went to a rabbi for a blessing - to be a poet. When he asked me if I really REALLY wanted this, I told him I did. He gave me the blessing.

Now you tell me how badly I want to be a poet.


Only you can answer that one.  

butters
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hello, inechoing silence

let me ask you a question: how much deep-reading and critiquing of others' work have you undertaken?

the reason i ask is because it's a great teacher. it enables you to look back at your own work with new eyes, having had to make determinations about exactly why you did or did not like a word, a phrase, a placement in another's poem. the more you read, the more you open your mind to all the differing styles out there, and the more open you are to seeing how to improve your own work because you are able to separate from it, read it as a reader, not as its creator.

now the editor you got the response from may have given you their honest appraisal; that's not to say a different editor might enjoy your choice of language in a whole other way, and he may well have been a bit of a tosser. i don't know.  however, if you are submitting to a print publication, or even to an online one, it is ALWAYS a good idea to read up on the material they print. it'll help you decide whether or not your kind of writing is the sort they're looking for - and different 'zines look for very different material: some will only accept form poetry, others won't touch it with a barge-pole; some only want material that includes fluffy kittens, washing machine blues and mr rights in the frozen goods aisle... others are looking for strictly sexual, wham-bam-thanyou-ma'am writing. you get my drift.

write how you need to write and what demands to be written, but be aware that how you write now may differ enormously from the material you'll go on to produce years from now. it's a natural evolution due to learning and experience. i've always been fond of the obscure words, the flurry and energy and outright beauty of some of them... but if you are submitting to a 'zine or book then they'll only be interested in what their readership shows it wants to read. at the end of the cliched day, you must control the words and decide who you are writing for - if you expect someone else to cough up the pennies and print you. personally, i write what i want and see what might be a good fit when subbing rather than thinking about it before or during the writing process! my own writing styles have changed enormously, and i follow where they go.

so, a love of exotic (as others may list it but natural to you) language... something i've learned is that the very best poetry happens when the words disappear: you read or better yet write something that connects so directly, the words cease to exist, replaced by sensory input, emotional manipulation... the poem becomes an experience you are a part of and so become invested in it. that's when a reader cannot but help like a poem - they feel a part of it!

David_Macleod
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butters said:hello, inechoing silence

let me ask you a question: how much deep-reading and critiquing of others' work have you undertaken?

the reason i ask is because it's a great teacher. it enables you to look back at your own work with new eyes, having had to make determinations about exactly why you did or did not like a word, a phrase, a placement in another's poem. the more you read, the more you open your mind to all the differing styles out there, and the more open you are to seeing how to improve your own work because you are able to separate from it, read it as a reader, not as its creator.

now the editor you got the response from may have given you their honest appraisal; that's not to say a different editor might enjoy your choice of language in a whole other way, and he may well have been a bit of a tosser. i don't know.  however, if you are submitting to a print publication, or even to an online one, it is ALWAYS a good idea to read up on the material they print. it'll help you decide whether or not your kind of writing is the sort they're looking for - and different 'zines look for very different material: some will only accept form poetry, others won't touch it with a barge-pole; some only want material that includes fluffy kittens, washing machine blues and mr rights in the frozen goods aisle... others are looking for strictly sexual, wham-bam-thanyou-ma'am writing. you get my drift.

write how you need to write and what demands to be written, but be aware that how you write now may differ enormously from the material you'll go on to produce years from now. it's a natural evolution due to learning and experience. i've always been fond of the obscure words, the flurry and energy and outright beauty of some of them... but if you are submitting to a 'zine or book then they'll only be interested in what their readership shows it wants to read. at the end of the cliched day, you must control the words and decide who you are writing for - if you expect someone else to cough up the pennies and print you. personally, i write what i want and see what might be a good fit when subbing rather than thinking about it before or during the writing process! my own writing styles have changed enormously, and i follow where they go.

so, a love of exotic (as others may list it but natural to you) language... something i've learned is that the very best poetry happens when the words disappear: you read or better yet write something that connects so directly, the words cease to exist, replaced by sensory input, emotional manipulation... the poem becomes an experience you are a part of and so become invested in it. that's when a reader cannot but help like a poem - they feel a part of it!


fascinating!

butters
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David_Macleod said:

fascinating!
is this sarcasm, as in this is all elitist bull, too?
as a newcomer of less than a week, and your outburst in the other thread, i'm checking for clarity's sake.

Miss_Sub
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butters said:is this sarcasm, as in this is all elitist bull, too?
as a newcomer of less than a week, and your outburst in the other thread, i'm checking for clarity's sake.


Not sarcasm. Carry on.

lepperochan
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p'raps affect should be minimum. outside of the obvious stuff like spelling, punctuation and grammar which is mostly universal what  we're getting is a person's opinion. for the most part we probably grade that opinion to the same level as how we rate that person as a writer

unless of course you've sent a poem to someone you don't know (some publication or competition) isn't it strange how we automatically rate these anonymous opinions as almost gospel-like. there's probably a whole book about it in the psychiatry section in your local library    

how well would we take when if someone we've never met tells us the top we're wearing doesn't really go with whatever jeans or dress we've on. or if they were you they'd probably have put the watch on the other hand and wore the jacket inside out. if it were some stranger we probably wouldn't pay much heed. if it were Gok Wan however...

here, on some level  receiving comments critique or otherwise is as much about stats or validation as it is about learning . it was for me anyway when I first joined

slightly off topic..

I think anyone who takes the time to write a critique for another poet should be commended.  I think they  make a tremendous contribution to the community. and to that end welcome the birth of Café critique and all it's talented poets who'll be donating their time and effort. i think we're lucky to have so many dedicated to such things here on the site in one group

[could be the communist in me, but I'd have liken to have seen a critique group who got together and went out into general population a couple of times a week,  gave ten critiques each type thing]



anyhow, long story short. p'raps affect was the wrong word. if it wasn't I don't think a critique should affect a person. I think a person needs to be able to look at a critique and take the good from it in a calm business-like manner

thank you, you're all beautiful

greyblueyellow
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anthony andrea
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These people like the man or woman who wrote to you despise you the reason that they despise you is because they want to be what they cannot b e  namely truly creative they regard you as nothing more than a fuel pellets for the machine that they are constructing and using to build a gigantic cathedral as a monument to their supposedly aesthetic sensibilities they are beyond disgusting and pay no mind to them at all all

souladareatease
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Neil Gaiman’s 8 Rules For Writers
Write.
Put one word after another. Find the right word, put it down.
Finish what you’re writing. Whatever you have to do to finish it, finish it.
Put it aside. Read it pretending you’ve never read it before. Show it to friends whose opinion you respect and who like the kind of thing that this is.
Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.
Fix it. Remember that, sooner or later, before it ever reaches perfection, you will have to let it go and move on and start to write the next thing. Perfection is like chasing the horizon. Keep moving.
Laugh at your own jokes.
The main rule of writing is that if you do it with enough assurance and confidence, you’re allowed to do whatever you like. (That may be a rule for life as well as for writing. But it’s definitely true for writing.) So write your story as it needs to be written. Write it ­honestly, and tell it as best you can. I’m not sure that there are any other rules. Not ones that matter.

Sky_dancer
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That's awesome, thanks for posting that Soul, he's very Nick Cave in his approach to writing, in that he depends on discipline, he doesn't wait around for inspiration to strike.

David_Macleod
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souladareatease said:Neil Gaiman’s 8 Rules For Writers
Write.
Put one word after another. Find the right word, put it down.
Finish what you’re writing. Whatever you have to do to finish it, finish it.
Put it aside. Read it pretending you’ve never read it before. Show it to friends whose opinion you respect and who like the kind of thing that this is.
Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.
Fix it. Remember that, sooner or later, before it ever reaches perfection, you will have to let it go and move on and start to write the next thing. Perfection is like chasing the horizon. Keep moving.
Laugh at your own jokes.
The main rule of writing is that if you do it with enough assurance and confidence, you’re allowed to do whatever you like. (That may be a rule for life as well as for writing. But it’s definitely true for writing.) So write your story as it needs to be written. Write it ­honestly, and tell it as best you can. I’m not sure that there are any other rules. Not ones that matter.


Amen to that

EdibleWords
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butters said:is this sarcasm, as in this is all elitist bull, too?
as a newcomer of less than a week, and your outburst in the other thread, i'm checking for clarity's sake.


I'm getting a picture here... more than the writing gift... the thing that keeps us at pen... the feeling that smiles could turn sneer, and alone, we write for a message in a bottle.

I loved your advice to a very relatable (to me) woman.

souladareatease
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Sky_dancer said:That's awesome, thanks for posting that Soul, he's very Nick Cave in his approach to writing, in that he depends on discipline, he doesn't wait around for inspiration to strike.


Good Deal Sky & David
My hopes that it helps a bit of people.

I pretty much hold that philosophy, I've mad respect for him over many yrs of books and projects.

Sky_dancer
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souladareatease said:


Good Deal Sky & David
My hopes that it helps a bit of people.

I pretty much hold that philosophy, I've mad respect for him over many yrs of books and projects.


He's a massive influence on my heart. To me he is the pinnacle of humanity. He's a very good egg.

David_Macleod
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souladareatease said:


Good Deal Sky & David
My hopes that it helps a bit of people.

I pretty much hold that philosophy, I've mad respect for him over many yrs of books and projects.


Honestly, I haven't read him but you have encouraged me to go read and hopefully learn. thank you

David_Macleod
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butters said:is this sarcasm, as in this is all elitist bull, too?
as a newcomer of less than a week, and your outburst in the other thread, i'm checking for clarity's sake.


let's put this one to bed - I agreed with most of the thing you said here that is why I said fascinating because it was fascinating

IT WAS NOT SARCASM!

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