Little Time

I’ve decided that August and I no longer get along. She’s just used and abused me this time around. Sure, we had a brief blueberry fling, and she’s showered me with blackberries and other sundry garden produce, but I’ve been swamped at work, and that’s just unforgivable. You hear me, August? UNFORGIVABLE!

Still busy today. I managed to finish Octavian Nothing, which I highly enjoyed. Very interesting insights both on the time period of the American Revolution and racism/slavery. Recommended.

I’ve also discovered that I’m out of practice taking criticism about my writing. When I was going every week to writing group, I got in a good groove of taking hits like a champ. Suddenly when my writing’s getting critiqued again, I feel like Rocky in the ring after a while. No longer to take the hits quite as well. That doesn’t mean that I don’t appreciate the criticism. Especially when it’s accurate. But when you shadow box for a year ago and start thinking you’re pretty darn good, going back into the ring with real opponents can be a rather rude awakening.


  • By raisinfish, August 27, 2008 @ 8:27 pm

    Awww…now I feel all guilty.

  • By brycemoore, August 27, 2008 @ 10:46 pm

    Don’t. You pointed things out that I would have shredded apart if I’d been you and you’d been me. It’s just so strange that I feel so capable picking apart other people’s work, but when it’s time to work on my own, I can feel so good about it and then find I was missing glaring errors. It’s all good. I enjoy writing, and I enjoy revising. It feels like doing word puzzles to me. So please–the worst thing you could do is start feeling guilty and then just tell me that I’m a genius.

  • By raisinfish, August 27, 2008 @ 10:56 pm

    No, I won’t just tell you you’re a genius. I know you want the truth. I do worry, though, that maybe I need to work on wording things more nicely. With people who are less experienced with criticism, I am so careful about what I say. But with people like you and Brandon and Dan, I just say exactly what I think without looking at how my wording could be taken. I just take for granted that we all have such hard shells that commentary won’t be offensive. But maybe there’s some benefit to saying things nicely, even when you know the person is used to criticism.
    That said, I think I know what you mean. It sucks to hear that what you thought was working doesn’t work, and it doesn’t matter how nicely it’s said. Fact is, the thing needs work, and the fact that it still needs work is frustrating because of all the work you just put in.
    But I think the work is worth it. You’re a good writer, and a good reviser, which is why I feel like I can tell you the whole truth about what I think about the manuscript. Some people don’t have the skill or desire to actually fix the problems, and so it’s not as important to be harsh about the commentary, because they aren’t going to fix the problems you do point out anyway.

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