Today is the last day to enter the Spec Faith Summer Writing Challenge. You have until midnight (Pacific time). Of course, if you post after the deadline, visitors can still read your entry, but it will not be eligible for finalist consideration.
Which brings me to what’s up this week. All week long, visitors will have the chance to read the entries and respond.
First, and most important for the sake of the challenge, visitors can give a thumbs up to as many entries as they liked, enjoyed, found compelling, preferred. Obviously we’d like to recognized good writing, but this is an informal challenge, so you the readers can determine your own standards and indicate your choices accordingly.
Second, and most importantly, perhaps, for the writers, you can also leave a comment, telling the entrant why you liked his or her work or what you think it needed to elevate it to the next level.
Personally, I’m a fan of balanced positive feedback.
I think I read here in the comments someone’s remark that there is no such thing as the perfect book. True. So we ought not to be shocked at negative feedback, but still, a positive comment can let us know if we’re on the right track in any aspect. Hearing general praise is nice (e.g. love it) but not as helpful as specific positive reinforcement (e.g. your characters seem so real).
Best of all, in my opinion, is specific positive comments in conjunction with specific constructive criticism (e.g. character motivation seemed a little weak).
In the end, however, feedback, no matter what kind, is helpful. We writers know how our work seems to us, but we don’t know how it comes across to others. This challenge gives us a little window to view the reaction of our words on others.
In that light, feel free to invite any readers, speculative or other, to stop by Spec Faith this week, read the entries, and give their response. The more, the merrier! It’s like a party! 😉