Handling Negative Comments

Amanda McCormick brings up an important notion in this “Weekend Redirect:” how to handle criticism. Not constructive critiques, but full on “you suck” verbal assaults.

Read on to learn her excellent suggestions which DON’T feature a kick to the sternum or slowly walking away from an explosion.

Author Amanda McCormick

Writing Tips and Tricks

So, I’m about to touch onto something that all writers who put their work out there to be seen have to deal with. It’s the thing that frightens us, and the thing that quite often keeps us silent and insecure, when we should be proud of all that we can accomplish.

It’s the negative comment.

I’m not talking about constructive criticism. I’m actually a huge fan of that. I think that we have to strive to take criticism, to hear notes, to want to improve ourselves. The moment that we can’t hear constructive criticism is the moment that we stop wanting to improve ourselves as writers. No… I’m talking about the negative comment – the condescending reader – the brash brutes who want to tell us how bad we are without actually delving into how we could improve. These people don’t know what a compliment sandwich is. These people exist…

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The Paradox of Sci-Fi

A recent post shared on Patty Jansen’s excellent blog “Must Use Bigger Elephants” via the recent Weekend Redirect via got me thinking…

Great Sci-Fi is about the present. Whether addressing general inequality, sexuality, norms, political conflict, terrorism, the nature of power, or whatever other bees angrily circle out bonnets, it places contemporary problems in the future. There, characters can hash it out using fantastic technologies and hide behind applicability or metaphor.

Because of this Sci-Fi authors and audiences tend to be dreamers. Many have suffered from some kind of persecution themselves, or at the very least feel like square pegs. There is something egalitarian about Sci-Fi… something that lauds the individual.

So why is there so much sexism and racism in the Sci-Fi genre?

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There are girl cooties on my space ship–on women writing hard SF

An amazing piece on women writing hard sci-fi, and it is frigging ridiculous that this kind of things happen. It’s not supposed to be a #@$#& boy’s club. The story is what’s important, not the dangly or non-dangly bits of the writer.

Must Use Bigger Elephants

reentryAnyone who knows me even passingly will know that I dislike pulling gender into a discussion at the first available opportunity. I don’t “do” gender-related panels, and I don’t favour pushing women’s work for the sake that it’s done by women. We have a number of really awesome female science fiction writers. My most favourite-ever writer, C.J. Cherryh, is a woman, and so is Lois McMaster Bujold, another one of my favourites. Kim Stanley Robinson, another one of my favourite writers, is a man, and so is Stephen Baxter. I like their subject matter and that’s why I like those writers. This is how I tick.

I also get weary of people blaming their lack of success too easily on external factors. Having success is a matter of luck and talent–but mostly luck, and persistence–before being a function of anything else. I believe that quietly chipping away and engaging with…

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This Smells Terrible! Here, Smell It!

Bad writing.

I mean really bad writing.

I love it.

I find it inspirational. Whenever I read a terrible published work, I step back with a little reverence and more awe than I anticipated.

Discovering really terrible writing is like discovering a smell so bad that you have to share it with family and friends. It’s so bad that it becomes a bonding experience.

Continue reading “This Smells Terrible! Here, Smell It!”