Friday, January 27, 2012

Question of the Day #1,187

Writers receive a lot of criticism. At first, I didn't like it. The suggestions felt personal. So I tended to ignore them. But over the years, critique groups and criticism from readers have become amazing tools with which to improve my writing.

I think writing for a living has definitely helped me develop a "thick skin." After all, I'm writing what the client wants, not what I want. So when they tell me to rewrite something a certain way, I write it that way.

This week, I took a first draft of an essay to my critique group. I knew it was disjointed and needed help. They pointed out the cracks, suggested ways to fix them and helped me pinpoint my overall message.

I am so thankful for their help.

I think learning to consider and accept writing criticism has helped me learn to accept criticism in my personal life. I am far less defensive than I used to be. Now, I tend to listen and then ask how I can approach things differently.

How do you deal with criticism?



  1. It depends where the criticism comes from. A critique from writers is always welcomed. A writing critique from my stepson is taken with a grain of salt. In general, I take it well. I'm always never offended.

  2. I'm with Rena. But I had a great kick off to my weekend this morning. As usual, I went to the Friday farmers market in Venice.
    Over the past year, I developed a friendly connection with the young man who runs the stand of salad and fresh greens. He knew I was a writer and the "Austin" part of R.G. Austin, the "author" of the original Which Way Books.
    Turned out he'd read and loved them all. And when I arrived at the salad stand to stock up on my greeted supply today, Casey greeted me with a copy of a Which Way Book for me to autograph. A serious lift to the spirits.
    An experience like that compensates for a lot of hours of hiding under my blankie in a fetal position.

  3. I confess, I am thin skinned and usually get teary-eyed.

  4. It depends on what's being criticized, I suppose. I don't think I have a very thick skin, but at the same time I try to live by the rule, "Don't take anything personally." It helps take the sting out of things.

  5. I'm very defensive and I always take it personally. I am the worst with criticism :(


Don't be shy! Please join our game of Questions.