Today's post is inspired by a few friends of mine from writing group.
Feedback, why do we have it and why do we need it?
Yesterday I went to this writing group with just two other people, with low expectations, but only positive outcomes. We often ask for feedback, because we want to know how someone thinks about something that we've created. Whether that's a story, a photo, a drawing etc. We want to know what other people think. Sometimes feedback can be received badly, sometimes people don't want to hear what you truly think. But it's the feedback that's going to help us improve. It's going to get us to another level. A better one. I think feedback should always be appreciated. You ask what people think, but if you're not ready for the answer then don't ask. Feedback is a way for yourself to know what you're doing right and what can be done better.
Feedback can be scary. It may not always be the answer you hoped it would be, but it gives you a chance to learn and next time, do better. Sometimes people are very nice to each other, to not hurt each other's feelings, so the feedback is often very mild and only positive. This is an okay thing to do, but it doesn't help the person that is asking for the feedback. I'm not saying be super harsh and only point out the bad things, but try to find a balance between what was good and bad and that's how you'll be able to give the best feedback.
Prior to the writers meetup I was nervous. Nervous to hear what they thought. One of the two people was even a stranger so that made it even more nerve wrecking. A complete stranger that doesn't know you and you don't know them, but you both wrote stories and that's what connected us. In some way it let us grow closer to each other. Something so little is so powerful that it created a new friendship. One of my 2018 goals was: Make a new friend. I have 31 new friends and it's just April so far.
Maybe, I was nervous, because I always think I'm not good enough, like what I create is just like everyone else. I hear from others that I should give myself some credit, but I'm too humble for that. Yes, I am humble, why would someone say that about themselves? I never said it, my friends did. If I think about it, I am. I don't like bragging or showing off. I don't like talking about myself. I almost never put myself first. That's just who I am. And there's nothing wrong with that. It's okay to be who you are. I encourage you to embrace your flaws instead of being ashamed of them. I know what makes everyone unique and makes us all the same.
"So, why did you go to this writing group?"
I am writing a book. Yes, you read it correctly. A book. Curious? Send me an email or through social media a message and I'll send you some information. Expected release date? No clue. I just started two weeks ago. Why go to a writing group? My uncle actually introduced me to it. He is one of the members. I must say it was one of the best experiences I have ever had. Just two hours filled with fellow writers talking about our stories and giving each other feedback. We were talking about something that was interesting to me. Something that I actually cared about instead of hearing about tests and projects that still needed to be handed in. Something creative that gave me a sense of freedom.
Yes, it is difficult to hear that some people don't like certain parts, but everybody is different, what one person doesn't like, the next one might love. All you have to do is write your story. Take their feedback into consideration and listen. Have an open mind. If you keep being stubborn, you'll never rise as high as the person who did listen. So it hurts a little that your best friend didn't like a certain part of the story, but it should never give you the feeling that you suck or that you should quit, because it won't work out. Keep creating, there's always going to be one person out there that will be inspired or someone who really needed to hear your message, whatever that may be. You should never let someone stop you from doing your thing. If you love it, you do it.