Suggestion for critters

Don't read anyone else's crit before you write your own!

It seems like a lot of subsequent crits look suspiciously like the first. :roll:

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camidon's picture

Re:Suggestion for critters

I used to be of the opinion of not reading other's critiques at all cost, but it recent years, I've let that slip. It's not so much that reading them before writing yours is bad, it's reading the others, than not writing what you had to say because someone already said it, or being influenced by what someone else said.

I absolutely believe a critter must write all of his or her own thoughts. If ideas from different critters are repetitve, then all that means is the author needs to look even more closely at that suggestion or comment if more than one peron said the same thing. Don't fall into the trap of not writing something because someone already said it.

If one does read other's critiques: In my opinion:
ALWAYS write your own critique, even if it 1) disagrees with other's comments and/or 2) it rehashes something someone else said.


Life is a lot like caving: Most of the time you grope around in the dark.

Re:Suggestion for critters

Easiest thing to do is -- just don't read other peoples' crits before writing yours. No chance of bias.

If you read anyone's opinion before you form your own, it [b]will[/b] influence yours.

It's much less helpful to an author if 3 crits echo the sentiments from another. They all become 1 crit.

I guess this is a hazard of using email. When you have a group that meets in person, everyone puts their crits on paper and no one sees other crits before the next meeting.

One option is to only send the crit directly to the author, and not .cc everyone. I do like reading other peoples' crits though: it's a learning experience for me. So the author could send the crits out once the "due" date is past... by a week or so.

Or we could just agree to resist temptation and not read any crits until we have written our own. I'm weak willed. It's really sad; I have no willpower at all. So if I can resist reading other peoples' crits, anyone can!

I'm not a complete idiot -- some parts are missing.

Re:Suggestion for critters

I agree absolutely. The only way to do a 'real' crit is to write your own before you read anyone else's. that's why I have a backlog of mail -- I haven't read the chapters that need to be critiqued yet so I can't read a bunch of the stuff in my in box.

I also like to read other people's crits because they see things I don't. It's amazing what some critters can glean from a submisison.

EmptyKube's picture

Re:Suggestion for critters

I skim other peolpe's critiques initially, but I don't give them a full read until after I've finished my own critique. I like to have one "enjoyment" read of a story/submission first. This is where I just sit and read it as a reader, not a writer. If it works well for me then I critique from that read.
If i stumble a bit or have any trouble at all that prevents me from enjoying it I put on my write (and therefore editor ) ha and start another read through where I try to figure out what actually hampered my full enjoyment. Once I click send for the email i go back and do full reads of what everyone else has sent, just to see if I was insanely off the mark, or if the rest of the group is barking up the wrong tree Laughing out loud
(first rule of writing groups by Mike Marsh: always assume the other guy is insane, not you.)
Laughing out loud :twisted: :roll: