Feb 3, 2007, 2:15 PM
Post #105 of 714
Hi A. B.,
Re: [Junior Maas] Writing Sample
Here's a thought: maybe we should separate two different issues: confidence in one's work, and the impact of the suggestions we receive in workshop. Granted, these two things tend to go together, but, as writers, we should try to keep them apart. That is, if I have enough confidence in my work, and am therefore able to see whether, say, this story of mine is salvageable or not -- and let's assume that, in this particular case, I know the story is indeed salvageable, even fairly good --, then I will be able to distinguish feedback that is constructive (that is, suggestions that make me see "blindspots", things that I might do to strengthen the story, etc.) from feedback that is simply useless or destructive. Then, if I'm sure the story is good enough, I'll be able to disregard the useless feedback, instead of taking it as evidence that the story isn't good. If we can take that attitude, we'll certainly benefit from the workshop experience. Because, while it's true that everywhere we'll have divergent opinions and feedback that is (probably unintentionally) misguided, we'll also have good suggestions that will improve our work. I think it's worth it to go into workshop in search of the latter; that is, weeding out the suggestions that don't resonate with me and my work.
Of course, easier said than done... Hope this helps, though.