I have to give myself permission to have a sucky day. And I have to give myself permission to step away from the computer and just go read a book or clean my house (bwahahahaha!) or go shopping or whatever. Sometimes it's okay to leave the book alone and let the brain go on holiday.
Hmm, is there a Thursday trend at work here? Critique on Wednesday, irritated and out of sorts on Thursday. Huh, must study this phenomena further.
Now, the goofy thing is that it wasn't my work on the chopping block last night. It's just a general feeling I always get that this group isn't quite working for me and I don't know how to fix it. We had a big discussion about trying to focus on story issues rather than nitty grammar critiques, and the moment we started to critique someone's story, the grammar police were out in force.
“You can't, can't, can't use a comma that way!” someone cries. “Thou must, must, must have clear antecedents!” (Well, yeah, but can we just WRITE that on the fricking paper and talk about WHY the motivation or goal or whatever isn't working or isn't going to work 100 pages down the road?) You could just see all the wind going out of this young lady's sails the more people talked. And she's a good writer.
Ann wasn't there; she's on Kauai, I think, but she'll be back next week. And she's the one who said this group needed to start looking at story instead of 5 pages of this and 5 pages of that every week. Bring synopses, practice pitching, etc. She's right, but the only problem with this group is that it's too inclusive. Anybody can show up to a meeting and get involved. We usually have regulars, but occasionally we'll get a new face. And these people write all over the spectrum. Some wouldn't read a romance if it was the last thing standing between them and certain death. How can that person give constructive critiques of a romance synopsis? How can I give constructive critiques of a literary synopsis? I may have a background in literary studies, but that doesn't mean I could write one to save my life. Me, I'll be looking for the romantic conflict. Ha!
I don't know. Just a load of blathering from a frustrated writer. I'll feel better tomorrow.