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Writing: Getting a Second Opinion

July 7, 2016

It’s nice to have someone to talk with about your art and run ideas by. That is, as long as your talk is thoughtful and conversational, and not just you droning on pompously. If you do the last, people won’t like you and won’t want to talk to you.

I was recently talking to a buddy of mine about a story I wrote called “A Murder of Crows.” In it, an adolescent boy harasses the crows daily with a pellet gun, until one day, a murder (flock) of crows attacks the boy. I told my buddy the crows even took off one of the boy’s fingers, and my buddy immediately replied, “Was it the trigger finger?” Up until then, I had thought the story was ready to send out to a magazine, but I now believe being able to add that detail made it more likely to be accepted. I’ll let you know what the magazine thinks.Sharing-Ideas1

Writers, find a couple of friends, preferably ones who read a lot, that you can talk to about your ideas. It might help you find that missing detail that makes the story better or complete. Join critique groups in person or online, but make sure you are ready to hear people’s opinions about your story, and remember that most are well meaning. It’s all part of the learning curve, growing and evolving as an artist.

I often share poetry on a site call dVerse Poets Pub ( and receive comments and feedback. “Open Link Night” happens every other Thursday, and I would recommend the site to other poets. Do you know of any other sites where one can post writing and interact with others sharing their work?


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