Critiqueing Other's Works

Recurring debates on important poetry topics.
Bob Pacey
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Re: Critiqueing Other's Works

Post by Bob Pacey » Mon Aug 29, 2011 8:09 pm

Footballs on Austar half time thats all.

The tigers are cutting them to pieces.

See ya,

Bob
The purpose in life is to have fun.
After you grasp that everything else seems insignificant !!!

Heather

Re: Critiqueing Other's Works

Post by Heather » Mon Aug 29, 2011 8:11 pm

You fixed it Marty - you cheeky rascal! :D

Terry
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Re: Critiqueing Other's Works

Post by Terry » Mon Aug 29, 2011 8:30 pm

One of Australia's top poets once told me that everybody should consider having their work critiqued, because it doesn't matter how good you are or how long you have been writing we all miss silly little things.

I often wonder about poems of mine that have been entered in comps without a critique that have picked up a small award would they have done better If I'd of had someone give them a quick critique, especially for my punctuation, probably not, but at least the punctuation would have no doubt been better.

I also agree with something Leonie said you have to make your own judgement, but for myself I can't see anything wrong with a critique as long as that's all it is.

Terry

Heather

Re: Critiqueing Other's Works

Post by Heather » Mon Aug 29, 2011 9:44 pm

I used to edit a newsletter and found the best way of picking up mistakes was to simply read it out aloud because you then "hear" the error that you may not see.

One trick I have learnt with poetry is to use different colours to highlight things and sometimes I see if I have over used a word or done something else silly.

Heather :)

carol heuchan
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Re: Critiqueing Other's Works

Post by carol heuchan » Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:29 am

love ya, Bob Pacey!
carol

Terry
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Re: Critiqueing Other's Works

Post by Terry » Tue Aug 30, 2011 11:12 am

G/day Carol,
You do realize that you're in serious danger of becoming hooked on the forum don't you?

Cheers Terry

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Glenny Palmer
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Re: Critiqueing Other's Works

Post by Glenny Palmer » Tue Aug 30, 2011 11:26 am

G’daay All,

Like many others, I spend a fair amount of time trying to help budding poets, & also, to some extent, established ones, at times. I think that because we are all passionate about our craft this is a natural enough response. In effect we all become each other’s ‘tutors’. If you look at any accomplished person in any field of life, you will doubtless see that they were consistently coached, in order to help them arrive at being ‘accomplished’. Take our Olympic medallists. Should they hand back their medals because they were coached…& further coached? How else are we to all learn our craft if those with knowledge do not pass that knowledge on?

I have long held the view that a primary goal of festival organisers should be to help writers improve. To this end I applaud Carol Heuchan as a judge because she takes the (interminable) time to offer critique pretty much to every entrant in a written competition. In my own case, in my very early days, it was a similarly dedicated judge who saved me from abandoning Bush Poetry altogether. I had not figured in the top 10 places of a high profile written comp, & therefore concluded that I ‘wasn’t much chop’ at this game. His short critique & suggestion that I ‘study my craft’ encouraged me to persist. Today, I remain ever grateful to him, & to the highly skilled poets who took the time & effort to coach me.

I think we have hit on the core issue here, with ‘publicly’ assisting. I usually assist privately, & always encourage the ‘assistee’ (?) to see my suggestions as just that….suggestions. I have indeed re-written a line or two, but with the express purpose of seeing that as a demonstration of what could be altered. Rarely have I seen an adapted draft from someone I’ve assisted, include any of my suggested re-writes. Rather, they have moulded same into their own words, which any credible poet would likely prefer to do in any case.

Entering written competitions is an important part of our ‘apprenticeship’…very important. I should be most disheartened if personality clashes were to undermine this valuable asset to our writers. Take the attitude to ‘have a go’ & then keep on ‘having a go’…& asking for help….until. In every single instance of my assisting another poet, I have learned something valuable myself….not to mention the bonza friends I have made during the course of ‘assisting’.

Take my word for it. Entering these comps will see you grow & improve. Just stay rigidly focused on the goal…..to be the best that you can be….for yourself, & for the continuation of our craft’s contribution to the world.

Loveyasall
Glenny
The purpose of my life is to serve as a warning to others.

Bob Pacey
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Re: Critiqueing Other's Works

Post by Bob Pacey » Tue Aug 30, 2011 12:43 pm

Carol is obviously a connoisseur of the noble art of Rugby League and no doubt a Tigers supporter.


I'm a true blue Queenslander and a die hard bronco's man but love the style of football the tigers play, very few tries scored off kicks and always an air of expectation when Marshall or Farrah have the ball in their hands.

The other rule is to Hate Manly with a vengence.


Bob
The purpose in life is to have fun.
After you grasp that everything else seems insignificant !!!

Terry
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Re: Critiqueing Other's Works

Post by Terry » Tue Aug 30, 2011 1:55 pm

G/day Glenny,
I think you have pretty well addressed the situation that's being discussed here and I'm sure that most if not all will agree with what you say, especially your reference to the learning of this craft that we are all so passionate about.
You can struggle on by yourself and give up in dissolution, or for the want of a little help never achieve the standard that you're actually capable of.
Entering comps is in my opinion one of the best ways of learning, as you have stated missing out on placings for a while only sharpens your determination to improve your writing ability and to seek the knowledge required to do this.
Glenny you have undoubtedly helped more would be poets on this site (and no doubt elsewhere) than anybody, here's hoping you continue to do so.

Regards

Terry

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Irene
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Re: Critiqueing Other's Works

Post by Irene » Thu Sep 01, 2011 1:54 am

I think this subject is always going to be clouded in grey, for there is no clear answer on how much is too much.
I don't believe that a small suggestion negates a poem as 'original' or as the poets own work, but yes, when does it become too much?
I believe that at the end of the day, we have to make the call ourselves - sometimes we will get it wrong, sometimes right.
A small suggestion, I believe, will not suddenly take a poem into a winning place. It would still have to be a good poem in the first place, given the standard of most of the competitions our poets are entering. And I agree with Manfred that the original idea, theme, composition, and most of the words, are still the original work of the poet.
As to posting poems on the forum before entering them in a competition, I personally don't see a problem with that, although I understand that the judge may recognize it.
I don't write my poems for competitions - I write because usually it is something within me that begs to be written. I then post it - not because I am looking for a critique, but because it was written to be shared. If at some later point in time, I decide to enter a competition with the poem, I am prepared to take the risk that the judge will recognize it, and maybe mark it down accordlingly. However, I believe that our judges are professional enough to judge a poem according to its merit, and not because they recognize - for better or for worse - who wrote it. That recognition may well even come from a style of writing that is recognizable to a particular poet - and the judge would still have to work past that. It is this help that helps to attract and keep poets interested in continuing their craft


It is great to see the discussion on such issues though, as it is so difficult to define what is correct and what is not.
Thanks also to everyone, particularly Glenny and Carol, who provide so much encouragement and advice to so many people.
What goes around, comes around.

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