As I told you all earlier, I submitted part of my speculative fiction novel, Life in Slake Patch to our current Writer in Residence – Richard van Camp. He answered with:
I’ve had a read of your intro and it seems to me that you find your rhythm in Chapter 4. I found the first three chapters to go so quickly, too quickly, that I couldn’t get a lock on any of the characters or their back stories. Perhaps a rewrite of your intro? My advice is slow down; take your time. Have fun with each scene. Sights, smells, etc. Give us setting; give us tone; set the mood.
Now for new or seasoned writers, critique is a double edged sword, some is favorable, some not but all should be taken as constructive rather than destructive. Several rewrites previously I took another writer in residence advice and ‘info dumped’ at the beginning of this story to ‘set the scene’.
So do I change it or not? Do I follow my gut and revise to balance the slightly conflicting advice from these two marvelous authors? Or do I rewrite a completely different introduction? This is something I will ponder and decide after careful consideration.
Have you experienced conflicting critique?
How did you resolve the matter? Did you change it or not?
Books: My review of The Sudden Appearance of Hope by Claire North
The story was a neat concept but fell short, unlike Claire’s previous two books. The character was complex, the story arc well constructed but the use of numerous synonyms of words detracted from the flow of the story – taking me out of the narrative. I understand as a fellow author that these descriptions were an explanation of the main character’s inner most thoughts but they were too much of a distraction for me.
However, it will in no way put me off reading another of Claire’s books – her ability to engage a reader is wonderful in The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August & Touch.
I have just started reading – I Can See You by Joss Landry.
I was engaged from the first page!
Writing Tip: Chuck Sambuchino
Remember the Three “P’s”: Patience, Perseverance, and maintaining your sense of Purpose.
Do you have a writing tip to share?
What book can you recommend?
January 25, 2017 at 10:59 am
Critique / conflicting critique tips:
1. Be sure your critiquer is familiar with your genre or something very close.
2. General readers’ feedback is also useful, but keep it in perspective.
3. Don’t act immediately. Let the critique sit for a few days. Think and reflect.
4. Negative feedback can also illuminate something.
5. Consider and reflect on the critiques you receive, but remember, it’s your novel/story. Trust your gut.
January 25, 2017 at 12:00 pm
Thanks for the great tips, Eva.
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