NYC Midnight : Creative Writing & Screenwriting Homepage
Forum Home Forum Home > GENERAL DISCUSSION > Creative Writing Corner
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - Trust your readers, but don't trust your judges
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

Trust your readers, but don't trust your judges

 Post Reply Post Reply Page  123 4>
Author
Message
NerdyDan View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Groupie
NYC Midnight Groupie


Joined: 30 Nov 2017
Location: New Orleans
Status: Offline
Points: 247
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NerdyDan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Trust your readers, but don't trust your judges
    Posted: 08 Nov 2019 at 11:28am
I seriously don't get these judges. Some of the feedback shows that either they didn't read the story at all OR they don't know how to get that certain things need to be implied (especially when the word count is 1000 words and  you literally cannot spell everything out). 

I will go over the specific feedback for story 2 in my post for story 2.

Is anyone else having any confusion as to what these judges are thinking? 

I know my stories are far from perfect. But when you read certain things from them, I just have to wonder where they find these guys. 


Back to Top
Random View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Black Belt
NYC Midnight Black Belt
Avatar

Joined: 17 Nov 2017
Location: C. of Letters
Status: Offline
Points: 3950
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Random Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2019 at 11:36am
...and the first one begins.  I should get a quipe doll.
This Sig Intentionally Blank
Back to Top
NerdyDan View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Groupie
NYC Midnight Groupie


Joined: 30 Nov 2017
Location: New Orleans
Status: Offline
Points: 247
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote NerdyDan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2019 at 11:45am
Originally posted by Random Random wrote:

...and the first one begins.  I should get a quipe doll.

I spend money to enter a contest AND to get feedback from judges. 

When it is clear that the judges don't read the stories that were submitted, am I not supposed to have a problem with that? 

In my story, for example (spoiler alert), my character was wrongly convicted of a DWI. His friend was driving and winds up dead. Judge 1909 said that my main character should have been written to have more remorse for killing his friend. Except he didn't kill his friend at all. 
Back to Top
uglypantsuit View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Regular
NYC Midnight Regular
Avatar

Joined: 16 Jul 2017
Status: Offline
Points: 368
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote uglypantsuit Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2019 at 11:50am
I think I'm the only one here who gets more to work with out of the judges' feedback than the forums. Not all of it is valid but generally their criticism picks up on the main issues better than the forum users. They don't wrap it in cotton wool.


There I said it. Awaiting torches and pitchforks 🤷🤷
Back to Top
louciferish View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Groupie
NYC Midnight Groupie
Avatar

Joined: 18 May 2019
Location: Maryland
Status: Offline
Points: 196
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote louciferish Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2019 at 11:58am
I find my readers and my judges have been in agreement both rounds. 

That said, the main reason I was happy to pay the entry fee for the contest was to get in-depth, professional feedback. If I'm not getting anything out of the judges' response that I can't get from a reader for free, why pay $50?
FF19, R1, Everybody Wants to Rule the World (12pts)
R2, Nothing Good (10 pts)
R3, Painless
Back to Top
Phobos View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Newbie
NYC Midnight Newbie
Avatar

Joined: 15 Jul 2019
Location: Missouri, USA
Status: Offline
Points: 96
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Phobos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2019 at 12:00pm
Maybe I've lowered my expectations after the 1st story, but the feedback this time was much, much more productive this time than the 1st story...
Fear is a powerful motivator. To some, it is a god.
FFC19 R1C1: G63 Cold Feet
FFC19 R1C2: G63 When Jenny Woke Up
Back to Top
tcFlash View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Black Belt
NYC Midnight Black Belt
Avatar

Joined: 14 Aug 2014
Location: Dallas, TX
Status: Offline
Points: 4110
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (3) Thanks(3)   Quote tcFlash Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2019 at 12:14pm
I will post the judges' feedback on my story in full on my story's forum page. The judges had clearly read my story. The feedback specified particular parts of the story and either criticized or complimented them. One judge gave specific guidance about "filter words" which I have just been recognizing in my writing as well. This feedback alone is extremely valuable. 

Having said that, judge 1940 simply parroted back my story. I appreciate that the judge clearly understood the flow, but they gave no helpful insights. The other two judges (1815, 1955) gave specific examples of what they liked. 

One judge criticized my use of the object prompt. They felt it did not adequately influence the story. In five years, I have never had this criticism. Another judge wanted more details about the life of my MC. My response is that maybe we should expand this to 1500 words and I'd be happy to oblige. 

The final judge went the extra mile for me in terms of negative criticism. {1955}  To remove distance between the reader and the action, consider deleting filtering words. For instance, “She heard them snap like green sticks” could be revised to “They snapped like green sticks.” Since the story is from her point of view, it’s implied that she heard them. In the case of the sentence—"She wondered if she would be forever bitter and unhappy”—it could be revised to a question (i.e., “Would she be bitter and unhappy forever?”).

Consider also removing words that over explain, such as in the phrase, “Her heart pounded with fear.” The rest of the paragraph shows the fear, so it’s not necessary to tell the reader she is feeling it (the revision would then just be, "Her heart pounded").


In general, the judges' feedback was helpful. Specifically, Judge 1955 gave me something I can take away from this competition that will improve my writing. 

 



Edited by tcFlash - 08 Nov 2019 at 12:17pm
Back to Top
NerdyDan View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Groupie
NYC Midnight Groupie


Joined: 30 Nov 2017
Location: New Orleans
Status: Offline
Points: 247
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NerdyDan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2019 at 12:19pm
Originally posted by uglypantsuit uglypantsuit wrote:

I think I'm the only one here who gets more to work with out of the judges' feedback than the forums. Not all of it is valid but generally their criticism picks up on the main issues better than the forum users. They don't wrap it in cotton wool.


There I said it. Awaiting torches and pitchforks 🤷🤷

Perhaps you are the only one, perhaps not. I find the feedback given by the forum readers to be much more valuable than the feedback I have gotten from the judges so far. (I have only had 2 stories critiqued, a third will come in a couple weeks with the MFF contest). I am assuming that I have had 6 total judges and I believe I 1 starred 5 of them as being not helpful. 


Back to Top
NerdyDan View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Groupie
NYC Midnight Groupie


Joined: 30 Nov 2017
Location: New Orleans
Status: Offline
Points: 247
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NerdyDan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2019 at 12:22pm
Originally posted by louciferish louciferish wrote:

I find my readers and my judges have been in agreement both rounds. 

That said, the main reason I was happy to pay the entry fee for the contest was to get in-depth, professional feedback. If I'm not getting anything out of the judges' response that I can't get from a reader for free, why pay $50?


Exactly. 
Back to Top
tcFlash View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Black Belt
NYC Midnight Black Belt
Avatar

Joined: 14 Aug 2014
Location: Dallas, TX
Status: Offline
Points: 4110
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tcFlash Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 2019 at 12:27pm
Originally posted by NerdyDan NerdyDan wrote:

Originally posted by Random Random wrote:

...and the first one begins.  I should get a quipe doll.

I spend money to enter a contest AND to get feedback from judges. 

When it is clear that the judges don't read the stories that were submitted, am I not supposed to have a problem with that? 

In my story, for example (spoiler alert), my character was wrongly convicted of a DWI. His friend was driving and winds up dead. Judge 1909 said that my main character should have been written to have more remorse for killing his friend. Except he didn't kill his friend at all. 
That is a serious issue with one judge. Frankly, it is an embarrassment to that person and to the competition in general. But we are dealing with human beings here. This judge did not do their job when they wrote this feedback. They totally misunderstood what they were criticizing. But you have a couple of other judges who hopefully provided  you with more insight. I sympathize with you, but it is something you have to let go. 
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply Page  123 4>
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Forum Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 12.03
Copyright ©2001-2019 Web Wiz Ltd.

This page was generated in 0.172 seconds.