PEEVES

Posted: January 3, 2011 in Process

I am reading interviews done with agents about their likes and dislikes regarding writers.

The following was listed as a peeve by an agent:

“Pages of exposition, lots of dry description, flat writing, lack of tension, lack of dramatic conflict, conventional scenes (particularly characters waking up in the morning and staring at themselves in the mirror or brushing their teeth), clichés, banalities, formulaic prose, lack of a striking voice, and tin-eared dialogue.”

At first glance, I thought, wow he’s really tearing peoples work up. He’s mean.

Then I reread it (about eight times) and started to wonder more about my own writing from his perspective.

How would I know if my novel is full of tin-eared dialogue and what does that even mean? I know what it means, but I don’t know if that means me.

We sit and write because we love it, we are passionate about our stories, and creative, but does that mean we have the process down well enough to be successful? Are we only great in our own minds?

Friends have read over my work and in the end don’t give much feedback. They might like the concept, the twist, the characters, or just me, so their comments are difficult to gauge.

While I am compiling my list of agents, I have decided to travel outside my friend circle to seek more feedback. I have recently signed up with a writers group, submitted the first chapter of my novel and hopefully the critique (scheduled on the 8th) will answer some of my questions.

Until the next line…
Sarah O’

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