How do you handle criticism of your work?
When I first stated writing, I was terrified of critique. I know I was not alone in this terror because I witnessed plenty of other writers become a variety of emotions that ranged from quiet and upset, to defensive and angry after receiving less than stellar feedback on their MS.
I feel like one of the biggest growth experiences I ever had as a writer was learning to put my work out there and not freak out about it. Of course, this only happened because I continued to put my work out there, repeatedly, to be rejected. After awhile, I think I just got bored with the drama and decided to think of it more as work I was doing rather than A PIECE OF MY SOUL.
I mean, I'm not personally offended if someone doesn't like a psychological report I've written.
Anyway, I'm thinking this because of a comment I left on J.A. Kazimer's blog yesterday. This is what I said when she shared about her revision process and asked about how other writers managed their revisions:
I just do little parts at a time. When the notes come from my agent, I
read them through once, put them aside, come to them latter and work on a
few of them. Oddly, revision notes don't really bother me the way they
used to. I remember when I first started writing and a critique would
hurt my feelings--that seems so silly now.
To which she replied (I'm not quoting exactly here) that critique didn't bother her, but reviews could be tougher to handle.
It got me thinking and I realized that yes, not-so-positive reviews might be more difficult to handle than criticism from crit partners and/or agents/editors. Here is why I think this is so; my agent and editor send me a private email with what they feel is wrong.
Reviews are out there for the whole world (well, the parts of the world that cares to look at them) to see. It is public criticism.
Yes, that might be just a little bit harder to manage.
How do you handle criticism?