January 17, 2018, 08:17:14 PM

Author Topic: How to know which crits to listen to  (Read 555 times)

Offline tebakutis

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Re: How to know which crits to listen to
« Reply #15 on: January 11, 2018, 07:49:36 PM »
If 6 people hate something and 1 person likes it, I take a VERY strong look at removing the thing 6 people hated.
Where it does not work is when their tastes diverge from intentions. If you are familiar with the most recent film Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, imagine that being my book. When my readers bemoan the slow pacing, the meticulous character development, the somber tones and retro-feel, the homosexual undertones, I need to ignore them (assuming those were my goals) - because their dislike is actually confirming my successful execution.

That's a great point, Gem. You definitely want to make sure that the feedback you are getting is from your target audience. If you take an SFF book to a writer's group that writers purely romance, for example (or vice versa) the feedback you're going to get, even in mass, is likely not going to tell you much. So in addition to looking for trends in feedback when deciding whether to act on something, it's also important to consider the likes and dislikes of those giving you feedback.

Are you writing grimdark? Got a 6 person group where 1 person reads lots of grimdark and everyone else avoids it? Might want to listen to the 1 person who likes grimdark over the six who hate it.

Offline NedMarcus

Re: How to know which crits to listen to
« Reply #16 on: January 12, 2018, 12:06:42 AM »

Are you writing grimdark? Got a 6 person group where 1 person reads lots of grimdark and everyone else avoids it? Might want to listen to the 1 person who likes grimdark over the six who hate it.

Exactly. I've seen this happen several times (with other genres).

Offline cupiscent

Re: How to know which crits to listen to
« Reply #17 on: January 12, 2018, 01:43:39 AM »
Ignore everyone else, just listen to me.  ;)

Offline Not Lu

Re: How to know which crits to listen to
« Reply #18 on: January 12, 2018, 05:41:56 PM »
If 6 people hate something and 1 person likes it, I take a VERY strong look at removing the thing 6 people hated.
This is critical because you cannot write to the masses. You write to a group of distinct readers, and the masses may follow. Write to the masses and you create - yuckiness. Going back to making a cocktail - you make a drink for A palate, using distinct flavors, each of which turns different tastes on or off. So the way to get someone to love your product is to make it distinct - a specific thing that makes choices that some will not like. Otherwise, you make something that no one hates, but no one likes.

This is great advice. Write for a distinct audience then market to them. Make sure your beta readers are a part of that audience.

I'd add one caveat if you're trying to write a book that has broad appeal. Add some voracious readers of genres related to Fantasy like SciFi, Historical Fiction, or Adventure to your beta readers. If you get good feedback from them then you know that something besides the trope resonates with people (like the story or character building).