IWSG Post 22: Learning to Listen to Feedback #IWSG
[I wrote this post as a member of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group where we share our worries and also offer support and encouragement to each other on the first Wednesday of every month. If you’re a writer like me and you’re looking for a bit of support, you can click the link and sign up here]
Thank you so much! And thank you founder Alex J. Cavanaugh!
Back in high school, I faced my worst fear joining a creative writing group—public feedback. I’d been writing stories since the first grade and up to that point my stories and ideas had always been just for me. Not even my own family really understood my passion for words until much later.
Now looking back, I realize the gentle coaxing to join the group was pivotal to my next steps. I did enjoy sharing my chapters with a group of peers and our writing coach, our history teacher. I did like the subtle comments to add or expound or even clarify certain scenes or details. I also learned some of the pretty language was just for me, and not necessarily the reader. Still a teen myself though, I struggled with the personal side of comments. It wasn’t until later when I became a corporate trainer and trained to teach 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, did I realize the difference in specific and kind feedback and the others types of comments that didn’t matter so much.
This month IWSG questions asks us “What is one valuable lesson you’ve learned since you started writing?
Helpful, sincere and specific feedback is my answer. I’m thinking of the importance of feedback in everything we do. There’s a balance of course in helpful and kind feedback verses critical feedback, which might be more about the person and less about improving skill or contributing to a clearer and more successful outcome. Those writing friends who do know the balance also do care for our own personal success.
We always have a choice of course, and feedback is biased and personal based on our own backgrounds, but I do believe it’s necessary if given in the right light.
And favorite quote this week?