Stick To Your Literary Guns

I love this post. I’ve finally been through enough critique cycles that I can really appreciate the wisdom of this. Get beta readers. Be a good beta yourself. But don’t take all the advice, and don’t be disappointed if they don’t take all of yours. My take may not suit your voice. Rise or fall on who you really are.

Dan Alatorre

I can't take it! I can’t take it!

As a writer, you’re going to have moments of self-doubt – sometimes coming from people who are actually trying to help you.

Recently, we discussed perseverance, HERE

When my wife and I were building our house, there came a time where we had to make a lot of decisions. What kind of cabinet pulls do you want (knobs, but they aren’t all knobs; some are recessed, and if recessed, then a pull), what color pulls, what kind of hinges – hidden or exposed, or this or that. Just to open a fucking cabinet. Multiply that over a whole house and you can quickly go crazy from too many choices.

It was crazy.

Me, on Bourbon Street. Me, on Bourbon Street.

But before we got that far, we first decided to build a house. So we bought a parcel of land to call our own – and promptly took…

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Avid writer and reader of Faerie tales and noblebright fantasy.

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6 comments on “Stick To Your Literary Guns
  1. Thanks for sharing this with your readers!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Off to read the original post.

    There were (are?) times when I felt disappointed my feedback was not used as suggested. And, I’ve felt upset by some of the feedback I had received. I think being gracious about it is the most important in both instances. Your feedback CAN but doesn’t HAVE TO be right for the other person. Many people have different opinions on things – yours does not always have to be ‘the one.’ When you refuse someone’s feedback – don’t be a d!ck about it. That’s my take on it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Not being a dick is almost always good advice. : )

      I’ve incorporated crit that I believe was meant to be cruel. It wasn’t easy at first, but I figured I came out ahead since it made my book better.

      As far as being upset, it’s important to look deeper. Story-wise, is it because they just don’t “get” your idea? In this case I have a mental flow chart that reads something like “Is this person likely to be part of my audience?” If the answer is no, then I blow it off, unless it was an easy fix. But if it was from someone who read fairy tale fiction, then I took it more seriously. Even then, NOTHING is going to get me to go grimdark. My stuff is the opposite of Game of Thrones.

      So lots of things are nonstarters, like telling me to go for spicier sex or use love triangles. Or if you want me to glorify thieves and prostitutes, look elsewhere. Lots of preferences come into play. I’ve asked my parish priest to beta read my book. That sort of thing is a decision, like profanity use. Some choices will irrevocably eliminate certain parts of your audience. Choose wisely.

      Line edits…it they add clarity, I usually take them. Ditto proofreading.

      I REALLY listen if someone tells me their eyes are glazing over due to too much world building (I know that’s a weakness of mine).

      If you can ditch the emotion and look at a beta read with about as much passion as feedback from Grammarly, I think that’s best. I’m trying to make a piece of art. It’s the art that matters in the end, not the artist.

      Or at least, that’s the way I see it. : )

      Liked by 1 person

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