Wednesday, August 11, 2010

It's all about hope

Writers, like me, Barbara Phinney, all need critiquers, but we often go at it alone. I don't connect with other writers in the form of critiquing enough, and I should do more, but we need someone, anyone to point out our mistakes.I'm creating a proposal for my editor. It was brilliant, too. A good friend of mine sent me her synopsis to read, and I offered her some advice, pointed out the weak parts and the great parts and sent it back. With mine. Remember how brilliant it was? All right, my critiquer, name Carol here for anonymity, sent me back her thoughts. Well, my ending wasn't so brilliant. It looked more like I had written it in my sleep, in fact. But like a good friend she is, she suggested a resolution that was so perfect, that stupid, (yet brilliant) synopsis should have seen it before it insisted it be written. And of course, she pointed out some other tiny, little, itty-bitty holes. Such as why shouldn't a mother want to know the details of her daughter's death on a South American highway? (because it doesn't fit into my brilliant synopsis, of course)
And why did the bug bite not kill the villain, but almost took the heroine's life?
(because I said so, okay!!??)
So you can see, my brilliant synopsis might shine like an ugly baby to its mother, but well, it's an ugly baby, plain and simple.
But there is always hope. In fact, a guest speaker in church on Sunday talked of hope. How we hope in the Lord.And I can hope in this synopsis. The underlying message of trust and peace is still there. The faith not in ourselves but in God is still there. It's just the story around which it is delivered needs to be touched up.
Okay, more than touched up. More like total paint job.After all, I have hope!
Barbara Phinney, who will use any excuse to post her Bolivia mission pictures!!!


Dana Mentink said...

I find that to be the painful/wonderful thing about crit groups. I have a faboo group that encourages me tremendously, but they are also honest and catch me on all manner of writing errors. Like the true friends they are, they're not afraid to tell me the truth, even when I don't want to hear it!

Barbara Phinney said...

Dana, isn't that the truth. I am as vain as the next person. But to tell you the truth, it's getting easier as time goes by. Or maybe I'm not as attached to the work as much as I was when I was just starting.

PamelaTracy said...

I've been very blessed with critique groups. The one I'm in now meets every two weeks in person. We've only missed on a holiday, otherwise never. We've met regularly for eight years. There are four of us.
The one I was in before that met every week for almost ten years. It's still meeting but I moved. I can't write without a crit group.

Barbara Phinney said...

Pamela, you are so lucky to be near enough to your critique group. Mine can only meet once or twice a year, and one we have never met in person.