When you’re giving constructive criticism, it’s important to indicate the difference between things that are facts and things that are opinions. As an example, for facts:
- Snow is cold.
- There seem to be words missing in sentence two on the fourth page
- Human beings did not exist in the same era as the dinosaurs.
- Punctuation makes writing easier to read and most readers expect it.
as opposed to opinions:
- I don’t like military fiction in general.
- This part of the story confused me. Where did the talking pig come from?
- This dialogue felt kinda choppy. Is there a way to make it flow more smoothly?
Now, as with most criticism, the writer is free to take it or ignore it, as he sees fit. The writer, however, should think more carefully when it comes to ignoring facts than to opinions (unless, of course, he’s writing alternative world fiction, where the point is that something doesn’t work the way it in ours.)
Both facts and opinions are useful feedback, but they have different weights and are treated differently. Let your writer know which is which so he can make good choices
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