Taking Criticism: Are You Man (or Woman) Enough To Be A Writer?
Years ago when I was an undergraduate in the Writers Institute at Saint Louis University I had a wonderful creative writing professor who taught me what publishing and the world of literature was all about. He told us then–and there were twenty-five of us would-be novelists in this freshman class–that what we write would be judged by him, not against the person in the next desk, but against the whole cannon of literature. “You want to write and be read?” he said. “Well this is your competition, these are the great writers of the world. They are the standards I use to evaluate your prose.” And then he pointed to a bookshelf of the greatest books in the world. Well, I never did very well against the Great Writers of Western Civilization, but occasionally he would nod approvingly over a sentence of mine, or the way I used a metaphor, and . . .Read More
I'd argue that one hasn't arrived as a writer until getting, and surviving, a negative review. Because it's only then…