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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

How To Handle Feedback, part 2

I didn't plan on a "part 2" when I wrote the first post, but Mary DeMuth's post this week about handling critical feedback got me thinking. Again.

Feedback from someone who doesn't read or write your genre should receive special consideration.

On the one hand, anyone can comment on how well you communicated. Did you accurately portray what it would be like to cut your way out of a dead dragon with a belt knife? On the other hand, some people don't want to know what it would be like to cut your way out of a dead dragon with a belt knife. Those people won't appreciate any skill level employed in relaying such information.

So, while the temptation exists to ask anyone and everyone to read and comment on your book, show some restraint. Don't give your horror novel to the reader of Amish romances (the converse is true, as well). If you do, expect some harsh comments and possibly a damaged relationship to repair. It's not a question of right/wrong or good/bad. It's just a question of taste. Don't leave a bad taste in a reader's mouth just because you want the opinion.

For the record, raw dragon - in my world, anyway - is not tasty.

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