Constructive Criticism – One of a Writers Greatest Assets

It hurts like a stab to the heart, like being told you’re not good enough. It often feels like a personal attack, yet constructive criticism is one of the most helpful tools in a writer’s arsenal for improving their craft.

Anytime a comment or suggestion is made to improve work that is based on a genuine desire to help write a better story, it needs to be welcomed like a rare gift, because often times it is. One can keep asking family and friends what they think about a story, and they’ll keep saying, “That’s nice,” “It’s really good,” or other vague compliments that do nothing to move the work forward.

Constructive criticism doesn’t always sound positive or feel good yet can’t be taken personally. Knowledgeable comments or suggestions for change will probably make your work better. Someone who offers a good critique shares what works as well as what doesn’t, showing how to flesh out the characters, drive the plot, offer better word choices, improve sentence structure, tighten the narrative, or anything else that serves to make an improvement in a written work.

Quote on Constructive Criticism

Someone may wrongly belittle a hopeful writer, but whatever immature insults are slung at their work have to be disregarded and chalked up to an inferior nature on the part of the unfair critic. If their comments aren’t positive or provide suggestions for positive change in the work, let it go, but know the difference between a person who is being deliberately hurtful or one who is genuine in their desire to be helpful.

Criticism is needed from other writers to get a better feel for the flavor and direction of a story. It’s valuable in predicting the response of the reader. It can develop a thick skin to taunting and slights, only allowing beneficial information to come through and can provide a stronger foundation for the entire manuscript to stand on.

All in all, constructive criticism is a tremendous asset and a necessary tool in the craft of writing.

Shadows of Oranges-1st Place Winner!

I’m thrilled to announce that my short story, Shadows of Oranges, won first place in the adult fiction category of the annual Art Tales Writing Contest for 2016, sponsored by the City of Ventura, California.

Take a look at my work in the tab marked “Short Stories,” and please let me know what you think in the comments section!Art Work for Contest

Review: Death House by Carole Avila (ARC)

Thanks so much to Lauren at Wonderless Reviews for her terrific review of DEATH HOUSE!

wonderless reviews

Death House by Carole AvilaGenre: Young Adult, Horror
Date Published: November 19th 2014
Publisher: Black Opal Books
Pages: 314
Buy: AmazonBlack Opal Books Shop
Follow Carole Avila on Twitter

Fifteen year-old Adley is on a terrifying journey! She has yet to learn that something sinister haunts her grandmother’s old mansion, or that it hides in a dark portal beneath her bed. The demonic being born of a generational curse does more than negatively affect Adley’s mood—it kills the first born child in each succeeding family by their 16th birthday—and Adley’s birthday is just around the corner! She meets seventeen year-old Victor Trumillo, a descendant of the original victim, and only he can destroy the hideous creature. Victor and Adley want to end the curse and save future lives, but will they succumb to fear just as they may have discovered real love.

(Yes, you read right. I’m posting a review! Of a book…

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