Friday, May 2, 2014

A Paean of Thanks, or Shooting the Messenger

Once again, as I work through the critiques of my current WIP, Connections, it is necessary to shout out to my writing partners, courteous and well-spoken as they are, to thank them for taking the effort, the hours and the energy to assist me in making my story the best it can be.

I learned long ago that shooting the messenger does no more than stop the messages, and it doesn’t always do that. It never corrects the problem that the messenger attempts to warn of. In some sense, critique partners are messengers, warning of poor word choice, unclear plotting and in my case at least, making assumptions that readers have no reason to make for themselves.

I do respond to my partners’ comments and suggestions, and encourage them to do likewise when receiving a critique from me. Some of my response are questions when a meaning isn’t quite clear, and some are explanations, which mainly serve to clarify their point in my mind while allowing them to say, yeah, that’s better or perhaps, what are you thinking? I always remember that explaining to a partner only informs that one person; the change must carry through to the manuscript to do any good.

However, my point here is that my partners have done a remarkable, nay, brilliant job in reading and offering suggestions which are as wide-ranging as they are helpful. I will acknowledge their assistance in the book, but want to do the same here. Andrea, Carol and Phil, thank you isn’t enough to say for your help and assistance, but

Thank you!