This is my Insecure Writers Support Group post for January 2022.
and Chemist Ken!
Please stop by their blogs and say thank you.
There's a lot to be excited about. Not only is it the first post of a brand-spankin' new year, it's the day IWSG announces the winners of the 7th annual Anthology Contest!
My writer friends have been on me for years to submit a story, and - since this contest's genre was romance - I finally did. I'm looking forward to the big reveal.
January 5th question: What's one thing about your writing career that you regret the most? Were you able to overcome it?
Wow. This is one of those lay-it-bare-for-everyone-to-see things, huh? Well...okay.
The first thing that popped into my head was 'not making more time to write and not putting more effort toward my business' (street team, newsletter, marketing, etc.), but I had legitimate reasons for my failures, most of the time. And there's a far worse confession than that.
I went through a phase, when I was first learning to write and learning the rules of fiction, that I became a very... intense critique partner. I was too harsh, and I marked way more than I should in the way of suggestions. So much so that it infringed on the writer's voice and drove my CPs crazy. (I've since figured out that if I feel the need to completely re-write a CP's story, either they're a complete novice, or we're not a good fit.) After receiving a few harsh critiques myself and realizing the need to dial everything back, I've changed.
Now if I make a suggestion, I make sure there's a rule-based reason why - POV error, passive voice, word overuse, a need for tighter writing - not just my personal preference. I make a point of softening what I say when I mention a problem, and I also take time to make positive comments when I see things the author did well.
Processing a critique is an excruciating rollercoaster ride. We writers need hills to bring us back out of the valleys. I make sure to give my CPs that balance, and I end my critiques on a high note with an encouraging paragraph or two.
Thanks for visiting.
IWSG is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. It's a monthly bloghop that offers a safe haven for writers to express their feelings and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. It's also a venue for offering support, both in the form of comments and positive posts. Writers of all kinds are welcome.
We 'meet' the first Wednesday of every month. If you're interested in learning more, click on the link above. And don't be intimidated by the size of the group. We're not expected to visit everyone on the list.