There’s nothing like a workshop to stir up a slew of conflicting emotions. On the one hand, it’s fantastic to get feedback on a story. But there are also moments of forehead-slapping annoyance for small things that one ought to have caught before turning the story in. And of course, deeper issues.

In general, the happier I am with a story, the less troubled I am by the crit. There were a few moments in the story I turned in last week where I thought to myself, do I want to do this? Is this the right thing? I had a sense that I ought to do something about those moments, but alternatives didn’t immediately spring to mind. So then I was like, well, where else can I learn what’s effective and what needs to change? To the workshop with it!

Anyhoo. It went fine, of course, but I dunno. What am I going to do with that bad boy? I got some really great prescriptive-type feedback from someone – in the sense that I felt he got what I was trying to do and I liked his suggestions – but I’m resisting making those changes verbatim, because that’s not really what a workshop’s purpose is. What I really need to do is think about the missing piece everyone felt to some degree, and find a way to do something about it while maintaining my own goal for the story.

And that! Is easier said than done.


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