Criticism: what it is and why you want it.

Criticism is an inevitable part of the job for a writer and is commonly available in two flavours.

a) Lemon – the expression of disapproval of someone or something on the basis of perceived faults or mistakes.

b) Orange – the analysis and judgement of the merits and faults of a literary or artistic work.

The difference between these two flavours lies largely in the degree of bitterness evident.
Some reviewers will try for an Orange and succeed only in supplying a Lemon. These reviewers lack skill and prefer to avoid thoughtful judgement by jumping straight to the disapproval. It’s a thing that they do.
Do not mind this.

Mind the Oranges.

If anyone who reviews your work can show balance of judgement, if they can show understanding of both fault and merit, if they can demonstrate a knowledge of literary form, function and phrasing, an interest in your genre, and a willingness to be open minded, then, you should listen to these people.
Let me be clear here, Oranges are not always right. Any review is opinion. But, if you have reason to believe that this is a person who knows their bananas, mind the Oranges.

And then your work will never be a complete fruit salad.

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2 thoughts on “Criticism: what it is and why you want it.

  1. Haha, indeed oranges are not the only fruit, but not so keen on lemons in my fruit salad, in a gin and tonic perhaps.
    But I do agree, we might want the sweetness but sometimes it’s the acid bite that helps us improve our writing.

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