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DDs Aren't Perfect

Journal Entry: Thu Nov 8, 2012, 5:45 AM
Looking at a positive trend in lit DDs. :love:

Probably the biggest demand authors on this site have is for more constructive feedback. And guess what? One of the ways you do end up getting some great advice is when you get a sitewide feature.

Here are a few quotes from great critiques seen in October's DDs, and yes I have chosen sentences that are offering constructive feedback rather than positivity, so don't assume these critics were pointlessly harsh. I've left them anonymous just in case, but if you recognize your words here, please understand they're appreciated!

I'd suggest incorporating more turns of phrase to keep the language fresh.

I feel as though the action around the beginning of the fire could be a little more clear, and perhaps the setting, too.

I think with a little more condensation, you could make a greater impact upon the reader.

I think shorter would work better, because then you're not adding more 'filler', and shorter sentences work to increase intensity.


Anyway, I'm including these because 1) they're good examples of how to suggest a change and 2) because sometimes people forget that there's nothing wrong with critiquing a DD (I haven't seen it in a while, but there have been posts like 'how could you critique this special snowflake' or 'don't listen to that jerk, this is peeeerfect as iiiiis' and they are most amusing when the artist's own comments say they think they could do better).



Guys, I am incredibly picky. If I were going to only feature perfect things, so far you would see two, maybe three pieces from me over the entire year. Perfection is hard and a lot of people who achieve it shoot for publication, which means it isn't even posted here.

There's nothing wrong with you if you think a DD could use work. Nor is there anything wrong with a person if they think something needs work and you think it's good as is.

And now for all the October DDs with less than 30 comments in case you're suddenly feeling the itch to say things. Hint, hint.

:thumb211856189: JuliaMetMichaelSamaraSawTheStarsGenevieveFoundFeari.
                               Tonight is different.
Genevieve pauses, watching layers of fog ascend forward from the darkness.  The ominous mist slinks onward as it settles against her taunt muscles.  Vapor coils along her skin like venom; tangible and prickling.
She allows herself timid inhales of February.  Every breath sparks arctic shockwaves through her nervous system.  Glacial streaks echo between her tissues; ever-so-silent, sickening her.  Genevieve then slows, listening to iced-oxygen as it hardens between blood cells.
                     The cold feels like boulders in my lungs.
She begins to feel so unexpectedly heavy in her skin.  Slu
:thumb321906436: JayAcorn wedged between bone feet,
In awkward rhythm of white-tipped
Blue tail, there, he precisely
Brings his point of beak, and again,
Again, piercing down;  now,
Meat the color of old mustard shows,
And the big head tilts, the crest
Lays flat, the slick throat shuttles.
His bright eyes dart quickly about.
If he had hands he'd rub his belly.
Argus ApocraphexOf the many tiny beads of sweat that had formed on his forehead, two fell down, further soaking his already dampened brow.  Suspended, he floated upside-down in a padded room, dreaming without consciousness of his body or its position in space.
His mind reeled from slide to slide—images of adolescence pooling together and then streaming into an old time film: The Life and Times of Donald A. Silver.  The yellowed silent movie showed a young man smiling and leaning against an old Chevrolet sedan.  Cigarettes burnt the corner, and he was dancing with the woman he'd asked to marry him.  But in the center of the shot, a blur grew from the inside of the lilies on her wrist.  A quick rewind to remove the obstruction, but instead it continued to grow across the bare chest of a flexing boy at the public pool.  And finally, it consumed the picture and gnawed it to the pit, leaving behind a carcass to rot in its old age.
The man awo
The ElementsI.
Wine as red as stained glass
is lifted up & tilted back
Empty cups
touch wood like thunder
having given up grace
II.
Blue veins
thread across wrists & palms
spent vessels returning to the heart
Fingertips suffused with pulse
lift to lightning's loveliness


Anyway, I mostly just wanted to toss a quick shout out in the way of all the people cool enough to drop polite critiques wherever they think one could be used, and also to remind you that if you get an awesome critique you should return the favour.

Till next time, keep calm and critique like a boss. :)


skin by Infinite705
Looking at a positive trend in lit DDs: critiques! Also check out =GrimFace242's Be A Critic as it's awesome.

The GIF is of Nagarjuna, I dunno what movie on account of I've seen like one Telugu movie ever. Damnit, when are they gonna finish that new one....

:iconcrliterature: <- go watch it.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconerinm31:
ErinM31 Featured By Owner Nov 11, 2012
"keep calm and critique like a boss" - if there hasn't been a poster (or are those memes?) made for that, there should be! :XD:

Excellent thoughts as always! :thumbsup:
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 12, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
:eager: do it!

Thank you :love:
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:iconmonstroooo:
monstroooo Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Good point, well made!
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
:D
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:iconraspil:
raspil Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012   Writer
those quotes you chose aren't necessarily what i would consider useful because they don't give examples of how to do what the critiquer thinks would help the story. but that's me and if someone thinks i should modify my work for their liking... (yeah, i know)... they better be specific about what they would want to see different. otherwise, they're wasting my time. none of those sentences really say anything without examples. but at least they're trying, which is the opposite of doing.

i would also hope by this time we are able to tell what is pointlessly harsh and what is actually helpful. if someone thought those sentences above were harsh, they better just get off the internet right now.
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
In some cases, the critiquer did include that stuff, I just didn't put that in. I think it's also on the author to ask for examples if they need it--from the critiquer's end, if it's a problem in the entire work, it can be hard to pick just one example. From personal experience, anyway.

Seriously dude.
Reply
:iconvi0letdreamer:
vi0letdreamer Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Student Photographer
I usually feel like I have no business critiquing others, since their writing is better than mine anyway. So even if I notice something I usually won't say anything.
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
You don't have to be better than someone else to see when something is off. :O
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:iconofonesoul:
OfOneSoul Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I strive for critiques. I always try my best to provide good and constructive feedback in my comments. I feel like people will not take to kindly to someone just bashing their work, but everyone needs a little constructive criticism once and a while. :paranoid:
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
:nod: Absolutely.
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:iconsingingflames:
SingingFlames Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I think critiques (or any advice) are very helpful. I love all my comments, but I especially appreciate the ones that point out something I did wrong, or could do better. I had one story up for about a year, and received several praises, before someone pointed out I used the wrong word in one scene. I had gotten so used to it, my eyes flew over it, and I didn't see that mistake until that helpful person showed me. I really wished one of my earlier readers had told me, before it had sat there for a year. Who knows how many others saw it? :facepalm:

It can be kind of daunting offering advice, especially if you don't know if the writer/artist wants it. But if they have the critique option enabled, by all means, share your opinions and suggestions, even if it's only in the comments. I know I'm always trying to improve, and I'll take all the help I can get. :)
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Ooooh, right? For ages people were like 'nice writing bro' and then when I'd done some more reading and looked at my old stuff, it was like GUH BLUH NO.

I don't see a problem with asking the artist if they want critique. If they don't, you can move on, and if they do, then go for it! (I don't always enable critique because it might be a rough piece that I don't think deserves a full blown review, but I never mind.)
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:iconsingingflames:
SingingFlames Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I agree. :nod: I usually try to point out what I really enjoyed in a person's writing and if they reply and seem receptive, I may ask them if they want a critique (if they don't have that option available). And if a see something minor, like a spelling error or missing punctuation (and it's not something that's repeated throughout the piece, so I know it's just a typo), I'll point it out politely. I know I have typo gremlins that sneak onto my computer after I go to bed and mess with my work. :shakefist:
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Yeah, I haven't seen anyone get bad about typos ever. On the other hand, I'm not your first-draft-fixer :doh:
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:iconjzlobo:
JZLobo Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
There's no such thing as perfection in art. I'm sure even Da Vinci and Michaelangelo thought their masterpieces could have been better. People who offer critique are trying to be helpful, and I can't stand people who think it's "mean" to leave critique and tell the artist not to listen to it. They're the ones doing more harm than good.
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
:nod: Absolutely. If you want to improve, you have to be willing to see the areas where you need to improve.
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:iconraspil:
raspil Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012   Writer
that is the problem in a nutshell. no one wants to face their failures.
Reply
:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
but we can walk right by them. less competition, no?
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:iconraspil:
raspil Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012   Writer
they aren't competition because they're not in the game.
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Awesome. Can they be padding around the edges, then?
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:iconraspil:
raspil Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012   Writer
meh.
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:iconphoenixofthenet:
phoenixofthenet Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Student Writer
Challenge accepted.
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Awesome.
Reply
:iconfenicksreborn:
fenicksreborn Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Student Writer
It's not just about critiquing the DD's (not that they can't use some work sometimes too), but all the works in the Lit category. Not all of us are up to the level of getting a DD yet, but would love more constructive feedback, more than just "I like this." Tell me (and other authors) what you liked and didn't like. Tell us where we are weak or strong.

If people haven't checked it out yet, =GrimFace242 is having a wonderful Be a Critic contest. It's a great way to find new things to read and give feedback. :)
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Yes, seriously! Don't let the few bad apples who don't want critique ruin it.

And thanks for reminding me about Grim's thing :love:
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:iconfenicksreborn:
fenicksreborn Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Student Writer
No prob! :D It's how I found a really awesome writer recently. :3
Reply
:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Tarien is boss :nod:
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:iconfenicksreborn:
fenicksreborn Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2012  Student Writer
Agreed! :)
Reply
:iconhavetales-willtell:
HaveTales-WillTell Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Professional Writer
:thumbsup:8-) You have a definite knack for saying what needs to be said.
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
:love: Thanks.
Reply
:icontiganusi:
tiganusi Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Professional
Ho, down. Those .gifs will be the death of me.
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Wait till I get to True Blood. :eyes:
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