Tell Me How You Really Feel: Spam Critiques!

I just checked my spam filter and found the most hilarious comment of all times.

Several of these replies on this post are garbage, You should delete them.

Now if I were a sensitive soul, I could take great offense to this.  I would feel hurt for my supportive bloggers and potentially swear off writing altogether because somebody didn’t like the vein of the post or my dear fellow scribes’ perspectives initiated by my post.

But I kept my cool and weighed the value of this feedback.

Yep, you guessed it.  Writers, weigh the words of your critters against logic, your vision of your work and what you know of the business.  Don’t let one critter get you down and destroy your passion.  Worse yet, don’t let them sway you into deleting the garbage if there is no garbage to delete.

I’ve been around the beta block a time or two and am in several crit groups.  I love the feedback I get.  Sometimes I confuse my readers.  Sometimes I shock them.  Sometimes I bore them or make them roll on the floor from laughing so hard. 

Always I assess their comments and determine which of these things rings true for my manuscript.  I love honest criticism.  I love the part in the process where critters challenge my skills as a writer.  I don’t love destructive criticism that dictates changes based on another’s personal agenda.

Find my flaws, but don’t change my vision.  Strengthen my skills, but don’t change my style.  Fix my plot holes or weak characterization, but don’t force your ideals onto my work.

This is my novel.  This is my style, my voice and my vision.  If you don’t like it, say so and tell me why.  I won’t be offended, as I know full well, I can’t please everyone.  If you love it, let me know why so I can get a read on what works.

If it truly is garbage, let me know.  But by Jolly Green Giant, make sure we’re talking the same language.

Don’t crit me out of bitterness for you own shortcomings.  Don’t tell me my writing is unpublishable unless you are every agent and every editor at every company across the globe.  Your opinion is one in the midst of many. 

Tell me how you really feel and I’ll accept or reject your commentary based on how it applies to my writing.

But whatever you do, don’t spam me. 

Several of these replies on this post are garbage, You should delete them.

What amuses me most about this comment is that there are NO replies on said spammed post.  None.

What do you do with critiques that represent spam more than thoughtful commentary?

4 responses to “Tell Me How You Really Feel: Spam Critiques!

  1. Cat, are you misusing the word “spam?” I take it to mean computer generated content that has nothing to do with the post. If this comment was left by some irascible reader, then it’s not “spam,” it’s just garden variety trollery.

    I haven’t suffered this problem for a while, but at one point, I participated in a private writers website where there were several very opinionated reviewers who didn’t mince words. The thing is, they really knew what they were talking about – so although some of their commentary could have been insulting, I quickly got used to it, and in fact came to enjoy them.

    In hindsight (that was quite early in my development), it was the best thing that happened to me.

    • Nope, Pete. It was spam. One of those where they try to disguise the mass mailing and have you click on their site because you might actually consider finding out why this person hates you–only to learn the “comment” is pimping Viagra or some Asian escort service.

      I love constructive criticism, but this profound commentor was addressing a commentless post. Another clue to its spammy ways. Made me laugh. In the same way that some off the wall feedback from crit partners does. You know, the kind with a hidden agenda?

  2. Ignore them, Cat! 😀

    • LOL, I do a pretty good job of ignoring spam. Thankfully I’ve never had to deal with spammish critiques where my partner is out for blood and not to help.

      I love tough commentary when it’s honest. It gives me the push I need to do better on many levels.


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