Monday, April 16, 2012

N is for Negative

We get a lot of negative feedback in the writing biz.

Our critique partners point out all the flaws in our work. Our query letters and first pages get rejected. Our books get bad reviews.

Negative, negative, negative. Bad, bad, bad.

But hold on. "Negative" doesn't have to mean "bad." It can also mean "the opposite of what is." Like film negatives.

Critique feedback is an opportunity to see our manuscripts in a new light, and to see them for what they could be after a revision. Rejections from editors and agents aren't saying "no"; they're saying, "not yet." Bad reviews are just saying, "your next book can be better."

So next time you hear something that sounds "negative," think of it as showing you something new about your work that you couldn't see before.

Have you looked at any "negatives" recently?


  1. Yes, I recently received a critique on my novel that made me realize I needed to increase the tension in my story.

  2. The opposite of what is--I like that. Good ways of looking at stuff here, Ishta, thank you.

  3. That is an excellent way to look at it. I'll try to keep that in mind.