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Writing Writer's Etiquette


Lady Asphyxia
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[size=1]So, we've all come across them; the annoying people who just don't know how to act in a discussion or criticism of your [or someone else's] work.

It could be something they say, it could be something they imply, or worse yet -- they could flame an ametuer writer for something that they cannot help, because they haven't learnt yet.

To me, these people [and I may have been one, on a few occasions.] are annoying and inconvenient. I believe that there are set rules that you should follow when discussing a piece a person has written, even if they are unstated.

In particular [which most annoys me] is when a person says 'Please, don't be hard on me, I'm just starting', and someone waltzes into the discussion and criticises them their work, and for saying something like 'dont be hard on me'. I believe you should abide by their requests and take it into account.

So, with that said, what is your pet peeve in the reviewing/constructive criticism rounds, and what is your favorite 'rule'?[/size]
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My pet peeve in the realm of writing is people who don't give constructive criticism. And I'm not just talking about people who just insult other's work. I'm also speaking of the people who just say "Good job! Great story!" and whatnot. That's nice and all, but it doesn't help me become a better writer. I know my work is nowhere near perfect and I'd like to know what needs to be worked on.

That's pretty much my only 'rule' when it comes to writer's etiquette. You can flame me as hard as you want or kiss my *** as much as you want, just as long as you give me some constructive criticism.
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[size=1] I believe that honesty and truth are things that hurt more than anything in this world.

And I believe that being an honest and truthful person is one of the highest things you can do to yourself and others. Not doing so only, in the end, will hurt yourself or someone else in all turns of events.

So basically I try to be as honest as I can be...yet it's usually considered rude, so I don't say anything. And when I do it is then even restrained, unless I'm feeling in a bad mood.

The truth is something [i]definite[/i], something [i]absolute[/i]. It can't be anything more or anything less. Yet people give themselves to things such as faith and religion and other things. It's the same way there.

Honestly no one knows if there is a God. Honestly no one knows if anything is truly wrong, writing of anyone's considered. Yet they believe that the truth is already paved from and for them when it isn't.

I try not to be one of these people, but humans might as well be called hypocrites. Because that is what they are.[/size]
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This is a very big problem in the art forum as well, I think. The big difference in the art forum is that there generally isn't much in the way of words in the original post. Very few people even try to explain what they do.

I don't know if I can blame them either. Whenever I write a decent sized post about my art, I find few read it. People make comments about things that I already addressed in my first post. Others come back and change their rating number (a process I hate, by the way) because they didn't read my explanation. It's very aggrivating. It's also why I don't post my work in there.

So, my point is that I understand the problem... but from a different angle. Really, I suppose things can be done about the problem, though. One of the problems I've found though, is that when Mitch, for example, asks someone to post a bit better... they basically tell him to shut up. I've had the same problem, and I've also had people post whole new threads saying I was a jerk or just whining in general. The big difference is that I can actually kick them out of here heh.

So threats work, I suppose.
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[size=1]Personally, I think the entire idea of rating creative work is ludicrious [even more so that I spelt it wrong -- I think!]. It seems like putting everything into a box -- and often artwork and poetry is something extremely personal.

Now, I don't want to turn this into a ***** session, which I realised could happen.

I think, the most frustrating thing I've come across as a reviewer, is when you know that a piece needs some [i]serious[/i] work [i.e. Third grade level, when the person in 12-14 years old] but you know quite well that you aren't there to tell them that -- you're there to encourage them. As a reviewer, I believe I play the role of an editor, or a friend. I'm not there to shred the person to pieces.

And I'll try to be honest, but sometimes honesty isn't the best thing for them. It's hard to be honest in some situations whilst keeping the role of friend and supporter. So, I suppose, while I can see Mitch's point of view, I believe more in watering down the truth in some situations.[/size]
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Well, personally when I critique something... I try to be nice about it, while still conveying my problems with it. I don't think I've ever been right out rude about things, but I know it can seem like that if you sit and come up with ten problems. I find the best course of action in that situation is to just tell them about a few of the problems at a time. If you tell them everything that is wrong with it at once, you almost always come off condescending and just overwhelming. That's obviously not a good thing. You obviously have to keep the creator's age and past posts in mind as well. I also make sure to mention the things I [i]do like[/i] about their work.

However, I'm sure you'll come across some person that is just really, really bad. Sometimes you just have to say so, I guess. Most of the time, I just don't say anything in those threads. If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all... like Thumper's parents say.

Yet sometimes you do have people that post really bad written work, at it almost seems like they're mocking everyone in here that actually tries. Like that one someone posted about "I scream, you scream" or whatever it was.
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