. . . when it comes to critiquing your writing.
- Your mother loves you and doesn’t want you to feel bad. Again. (She’s never forgotten that little “incident” back when you were in grade school. The look on your face! Sigh.)
- Your friends are being (kind of) honest when they say what you wrote is great. (It is, compared to what they would write. It may not be, compared to what a professional would write.)
- Your family may not have actually read what you wrote. (You: “Did you like it?” Them: “It was awesome!” You: “What was your favorite part?” Them: “Buh . . . everything!”)
- Your good buddy/dear, dear friend fears jeopardizing your good buddy-ness/dear, dear friendship.
- Family and friends, less skilled in language than you are, may struggle for a polite way to say “stinks” or “blows” and so may just give your piece a hearty thumbs up. (A thought which now gives this author pause because his family and friends have given some of these blog items a hearty thumbs up. But they meant it. He can tell.)
A family member, friend, editor, or fellow writer who will offer you an honest, intelligent and informed opinion is worth more than his or her weight in chocolate-chip cookie dough.
Writers or not, we all need to cultivate the delicate art of telling a loved one the truth . . . gently.
Just keep writing.