We've talked before here at the Lesser Key about the importance of crit groups, and about accepting criticism with an open mind and in the spirit with which it was given. But what about the times when you just don't agree with your what your reader says?
Sometimes, even with a great crit comes a few comments that throw you for a loop. So how do you know who's "right?" Is anyone right at all? How can you be sure?
Well aside from the obvious advice, "Get a second opinion"("Brain cloud? You didn't get a second opinion on something called a BRAIN CLOUD?" Ooops. I typed that? Sorry, y'all, but when I think the words "second opinion", my mind goes straight to "Brain Cloud." That's just how I'm wired, I suppose. But I digress.), maybe think about why the reader recommended the change. It could simply be that the way you've written a scene or plot point wasn't quite clear enough for them.
Or it may be that something you wrote earlier led them to expect a different outcome than the one you depicted, leaving them feeling dissatisfied. Barring the possibility that what you wrote was just self-indulgent drivel (all the self-indulgent drivel should have been stripped out at least two revisions ago), you might find that the reason the comment rankles so much is because it means a failure to communicate on your part.
Instead of getting down on yourself—or that gosh-darn-know-it-all critter—which won't help anyone, figure out where you went wrong and fix it.
And if, after all that, you still maintain that your way was the best way, nay, the only way to write the scene, well, maybe you have a Brain Cloud after all.
Only course of action for a Brain Cloud is to get a second opinion. ;)
“All writers are vain, selfish and lazy, and at the very bottom of their motives lies a mystery. Writing a book is a long, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand.” ~George Orwell
I'm a YA writer who delves into urban fantasy, paranormal and romance, and who loves reading good books almost as much as writing them.
When not writing—or working—I enjoy daydreaming, drinking tea, and walking in cemeteries. I used to spend the rest of my time checking my inbox for manuscript requests, but am now proudly represented by Rosemary Stimola, of Stimola Literary Studio.