What works better for you: praise or critique?

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Mira
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What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by Mira » December 16th, 2009, 10:38 am

I'm curious about what helps motivate us more?

Does praise get you going? Or critique inspire you? Or some combination?

For me, it's mostly praise. I can get challenged by critique, but usually I just wilt. Praise will get me leaping tall buildings with a single bound.

How about you? What works for you?

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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by casnow » December 16th, 2009, 10:43 am

Critique helps me more, b/c it is the only way my writing is going to get better... I only appreciate praise from agents and editors.
So, if Putnam's head editor calls me up and tells me my manuscript kicks ass, and points out a typo on page 53? Yeah, that would be heaven

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Crystal
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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by Crystal » December 16th, 2009, 10:45 am

I am the type of person that lives for praise. Probably being a writer is not a great career choice for me as rejection is more prevalent then praise in this biz. I find when I share a portion of my story and am rewarded with praise a creative fire is lit in me and I write more.

I know I will have to learn to "enjoy" critique in order to become a better writer. I figure when I see my first book in print it will be well worth it. :)
Working my very first attempt at a mystery novel. 1st draft

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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by Tzalaran » December 16th, 2009, 11:11 am

Criticism.

It stings at first, but then forces you to get a more objective view and allows you to create something better.

Praise gives me a hollow sense of self-confidence and just doesn't help me improve. It is nice to hear something good, but after that i want to hear what wasn't up to snuff so i can make it better. But that is just me...
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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by shadow » December 16th, 2009, 4:48 pm

well clearly we all LOVE to see others praise our works and I know that makes us so happy! Critique does somewhat make me a bit wilted but you know it is needed. If you have the hearshest people critique you on the MS you will be ready for the editors and they can get very nit picky. So critique is more usefull but p[raise makes me happy!
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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by UtterInanity » December 16th, 2009, 5:02 pm

Absolutely criticism.

I'd rather know what needs to be fixed than what doesn't.
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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by jjshannon » December 16th, 2009, 5:20 pm

I suspect some degree of praise for the BIG picture is required for me to carry on writing. I mean, if I heard stuff like "anemic plot, mediocre voice, lousy dialogue, boring character/s, etc.," enough times, I'd deep 6 my publishing hopes. But if I get enough positive feedback about the big picture, then I welcome criticism of the other stuff. I want to tell a really good story, and that means getting input on what's fixable and fixing it for the sake of a better story. I'm too old to lug around a big ego, so blows below the belt are about all that can "wilt" me these days.

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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by a_r_williams » December 16th, 2009, 5:22 pm

I like a balance with maybe 4/5 critique to 1/5 praise.

If the only thing a reviewer does is talk about how horrible my writing is. I can get to the point where I tune them out. I can handle the criticism and it does help me improve, but I need a little bit of praise too.

If the only thing a reviewer does is give praise, then it leaves little motivation to improve. It doesn't tell you what you need to work on.

As someone above mentioned, the person who does the critique may make a difference. As does the time it is given. Before publication more criticism, after more praise.

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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by trini » December 16th, 2009, 5:27 pm

I prefer the word feedback. And when offering it I use the technique I learned at Toastmasters. CRC: Commend, Recommend, Commend. Feedback should be encouraging and helpful. So I say what I like about a presentation or a piece of work, then I offer feedback around what I think might improve it and then I talk about more stuff that I liked about it. This is how I like to receive feedback also. I like to know what works and what needs fixing.
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marilyn peake
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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by marilyn peake » December 16th, 2009, 8:56 pm

Both.
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Novels: THE FISHERMAN’S SON TRILOGY and GODS IN THE MACHINE. Numerous short stories. Contributor to BOOK: THE SEQUEL. Editor of several additional books. Awards include Silver Award, 2007 ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards.

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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by kristi » December 16th, 2009, 8:59 pm

I'm with Marilyn on this. One without the other would make me feel stagnant as a writer.

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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by taymalin » December 17th, 2009, 8:23 pm

Depends.

I will sometimes ask friends to read the story I'm drafting. At this point I am only seeking praise, and will let them know that. During the drafting phase criticism kills the muse and feed the inner editor, so it is not at all helpful in terms of motivating me.

On the other hand, when I am polishing a story, criticism is much more useful. Praise is useful too--it's always good to know where your strengths lie. A critique should be a balanced combination of the two.

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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by Heather Bahnard » December 17th, 2009, 10:25 pm

I am in the both camp as well.
Praise helps me feel better
Critique makes my work better.
I think that if I had to choose I would choose critique over praise. I think that it is so much harder to find people who will give you an educated and unbiased critique of your work than to find people who will give you praise.

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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by ink spills » December 17th, 2009, 10:48 pm

When all I get is praise from someone, I get worried about their honesty. Criticism may not be very motivational, but neither is the idea that if there are any flaws with my writing, I have to dig through and find them myself. A dash of each and I'm singing (and editting).

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Re: What works better for you: praise or critique?

Post by Mary E. Ulrich » December 17th, 2009, 11:05 pm

I like the critique, but given lovingly.

It ALWAYS hurts, it ALWAYS makes me think I am the awfulest writer alive...it ALWAYS makes my work stronger.

I would never submit anything without a second read from a critique partner.

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