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Sorcerer Speaks about Constructive Critism

Constructive criticism is a very important factor in life. Not just in the world of literature, but in every day life, constructive criticism is often times a deciding factor in how someone does their work. However, often times people donít take the necessary time to be constructive about what they say, and rather just spout out what comes to mind immediately. While sometimes itís good to do this (venting comes to mind specifically), however when it comes to something that holds somewhat importance, literature or class work or something for example, then constructive criticism is an important factor. Constructive criticism is somewhat like positive reinforcement. Anyone that has worked with children knows what this is Ė itís basically making someone feel good by complimenting them needlessly. I use this to give you an idea of what I mean when I say ďconstructive criticismĒ, because oddly enough, giving constructive commentary on something can be relatively difficult for some people.

Some people just donít understand the positive reinforcement aspect of constructive criticism Ė unless the entire work is absolutely terrible (which, donít get me wrong, is entirely possible), there has to be something that is good about what theyíve written. Try to find that and open it up. Make sure that the author/worker/whoever knows and realizes that they did in fact do something right. Often times, when someone realized that the one specific part of what they did was good, then they can open that up and use it as a basis for doing the rest of their work in that fashion. Constructive criticism can be applied in a number of ways, however the most prevalent way is easily just thinking out what you think of something, putting it down on paper (or on a screen), making it sound educated (with proper spelling, grammar etc..) and posting it. Thatís really all there is too it.

The most difficult part of this process is thinking up what you want to say. Basically, there are a number of ways to string your thoughts together on a piece of work. First, you have to think about how this piece affected you. Did it leave you wondering what happened to the characters, did it make you feel bad on the inside, did it bring up bad childhood memories, did it make you have a sudden urge to go cow tipping? Whatever it is, tap into it and put it down, because that is very important. The feelings that people work evokes out of you is pretty important Ė if someoneís written word can make you cry, then I think they deserve to know about it, because itís obvious that what they have written is very powerful and moving. Right? Of course right.

RPGClassics supplies a forum for the media section. It is a public forum - posting your work in such a place opens the doors for people to talk about your work, which is a bit different from submitting. Itís a great place for a rookie writer to get opinions about their work. Some people are going to like what you make, others will not. Unfortunately, this is a fact of life that applies to everything, and youíre just gonna have to get over it, assuming you do decide to post any work there. Everyone will state what they feel about your work, and whether or not you like it or not, you should respect other people's opinions about what they think of what you've made. Now, I must warn you Ė not everyone on RPGC is going to be nice about what youíve written. Some people just donít quite understand this whole constructive criticism thing. While I must say, it isnít a very complicated or difficult subject to pick up and roll with, some people, in the face of art, have to be stupid and nothing else.

On the receiving end of constructive criticism? Thatís cool, that means you have completed something and posted it on our message boards, or sent it in to someone to read for you. Now, thereís two kinds of constructive criticism; good and bad. If youíre getting good, solid criticism that seems to have a strong point, good grammar, and gives you tips and pointers on how to make your work better, then congratulations, you have found someone that is worth listening too. However, if youíre getting something completely negative, with incorrect grammar (and even correct grammar Ė unfortunately, there are some idiots who can type just fine), then throw them on the ignore function, and keep on trekking. Youíll soon find that there are a great number of people, myself included, who love to give out pointers and tips to fellow writers.

To follow up, those of us who are giving the advice, put the constructive in the constructive criticism. That means put some thought in what you're saying, don't be a prick, just say something easy to understand and meaningful to whomever it may concern. These crucial parts of the process make it all worth while when someone makes something that is truly great.

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