Saturday, July 11, 2009

Handling Criticism

I don't claim to be perfect—far from it. Anyone who places a work in public opens him or herself up to criticism, be it constructive or negative. I value any review of my work; it makes me a better creator. Learning from constructive criticism is part and parcel of the creation process, just as much as picking up that pen or pencil, typing on that blank page or computer screen and all the way to the final product, framed or bound.

I am just a small-time writer/artist, wanting to contribute back to this world, so I refuse to subscribe to the viewpoint that creators should be above criticism, particularly the wealthier and more famous one becomes. That doesn't mean a negative review doesn't sting. Questioning grammar, syntax and other aspects of writing construction are valid criticisms; some people just don't read the words on the page like I write them in my head. I suppose a good editor is called for in that instance, and in my case, yes, I do not have one at my disposal, which is my call (or better yet, my savings account's). I recently read a critique questioning choices I made in regards to writing Jaunt, one of which goes beyond constructive criticism to pondering my subconscious as I was writing the story. I will take that into consideration.

So I say, thank you. Thank you for strengthening my creative suit of armor. I am certain there will be more critics out there pondering my subconscious in the future as I create better, more self-satisfying stories. Because, in the end, that's what it is all about. I can please only one person in this world, and that person is me.
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