I find it easier to see the mistakes in someone’s elses work (my mom would remark that I have this genetic fault of being extra critical, we will discuss that in another post). With my own work I tend to be biased. I also end up overlooking my flaws and mistakes. It’s only when my crit partners point it out that I realize it, though that shortcoming in my writing would have been under my nose all the time.
Everytime I critique my CP’s work I end up getting more than I give. I think I benefit more from it than they do. For one, I become aware of the errors housed in my own writing. I also know what mistakes to avoid. I also know why certain scenes work and why others do not. When I critique I feel like I am looking into a writing mirror.
My take is that critiquing is a simple and effective way of honing our skills. And another fact is that a new pair of eyes is beneficial. We get a fresh perspective on our writing. Someone unconnected with a story can bring fresh insight into it. As long as our comments are not harsh or unjustified, it’s a win-win situation.
Do I need to add the loads of good karma we accrue when we help out another writer/person?
Does doing a critique of someone else’s work help you become a better writer? Does it make you aware of your own writing mistakes? What’s your take on critiquing? I would love to know if critiques are like staring in the mirror for you too?