Editing Friends

| Comments (3)

I'm dashing off to get syllabi photocopied, but this piece by Rachel Toor in the Chronicle of Higher Ed caught my eye. 

I know a lot of you are writers, and you critique stuff for other people, either in workshops or informally, so a piece like, "Editing Friends:  How to Avoid Hurt Feelings and Battered Relationships When Friends Turn to You for a Close Read" seemed like a natural.

It's a touchy situation (it's hard enough to edit yourself!), and most of us have been there.  Toor offers some straightforward advice to help it come out well. 

Comments:

Faye said:

Very timely for those of us currently in graduate programs and workshops. I have seen first-hand what a tough time many students, especially new creative writing students, have putting their drafts out there for critique. There are ways to be honest and offer constructive comments without tearing a writer or their work down, and there is always something positive to find and comment on in a manuscript to balance other suggestions. I think anyone who has the courage to write and put their work out there deserves respect and encouragement. There are times when a good, hard, straight-talking critique is needed, but as this article suggests, in those cases it's good for the writer and the reader to be clear from the start that this is what's expected.

January 9, 2009 9:02 AM

fayepoet said:

How timely! Two days post MFA, I have been pondering this very question— how to tap into friends and colleagues as readers. I have a good friend, a prolific reader, who "wants to learn to critique and be part of the process." Rachel Toors article is a terrific cautionary tale and segue into the conversation. I thank you, once again, Joy for a terrific resource just at the right time.

January 12, 2009 3:32 PM

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