Let’s dive in!
So there’s a bunch of different ways to write a critique. Some do a general synopsis. Some look through with a fine toothed comb. Some critters are looking for more grammatical issues while others are focused on NPLQ (which stands for Nit Picky Logic Questions). Today I’d like to send your attention to my friend Alayne’s critique of Monster Hunter.
If you take the time to look through it, she really hits on tons of ideas, issues with grammar, and NPLQs all over the place. This, my fellow readers, is a home run of critiques. If you want to do someone a favor, try to hit a critique from as many different angles as possible.
Of course, there are “rules” that one should consider. For example, if I see that a story isn’t all that fleshed out, it makes more sense to give some general ideas. If I have a “brain-pop” when I’m critiquing, I may stop my critique and just offer some thoughts on ways to break the story down and put it back together in a different way.
Also, one should respect what the author is looking for. For me, I’m happy with my story and the “mechanics” of what I’m trying to tell–what I need to make sure is that the story is as tight and fun as possible. I want to know where things drag. I want to know where things don’t make sense. Other writers might simply say, “Hey gang, this is a pretty first drafty kind of story, let me know if I’m off in the correct direction.” I’m a bit past that point.
Overall, as the critter, the main focus is to have respect to the author–but not respect like, “I’m not going to hurt your feelings.” The way I want to offer respect AND the ways that I feel respected is when someone takes there time to point things out that I am clearly missing. There’s no sense in having someone, in essence, judge your work, if you don’t want to hear the judgement. That’s no way for a story to get stronger.
Did I agree with all of Alayne’s critique? No, of course not. But I sure took TONS of her ideas to heart. So much so that I had to really sit on my story for a while before starting to make the newest draft changes.
And because of her work (and the work of all of my critique group), my story is that much stronger for it.
Without further ado–Alayne’s Awesome Critique
Updated story coming very soon.
By the way, if you are serious about writing and aren’t in a critique group yet–please here my plea: For the sake of all the stories and words on your screen…JOIN A CRIT GROUP!