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as a rule, we don't like the following kind of feedback in a workshop; [you can read it/them in the following posts]

if you were giving comments on a football match or pair of tits you'd know what to say; if you discussing a film or piece of music you'd know what to say.

you we can all be expert critics at a dinner table but when it comes to giving feedback on poetry our lips become magically sealed. mmmm mmmm what do i know etc etc ad-infinitum. well from now on inane feedback that helps nobody, will be placed here and discussed over and ad-infinitum [I thought that was rather fuckin' clever of meself]


Quote:Wilbur Wrote:  I don't really have any technical knowledge of poetry, so I can't comment on that, but I thought this was a powerful and beautifully expressed poem. Thanks for sharing it.
What gets me about that comment is the, "I really don't have any technical knowledge of poetry" part... the forum has 'serious' in the title! I'll admit, I posted less-than-adequately in the serious workshopping not long after I joined, but soon learned to LEAVE IT ALONE because I'm not experienced enough to comment there yet. I didn't come right out and say I have no technical knowledge of poetry though...
I don't think you need any technical knowledge at all to be able to comment about specifically what works or doesn't for you - indeed it may be easier without it.
(09-22-2015, 11:19 AM)milo Wrote: [ -> ]I don't think you need any technical knowledge at all to be able to comment about specifically what works or doesn't for you - indeed it may be easier without it.

True... but a little more technical knowledge wouldn't hurt me Smile
(09-22-2015, 11:19 AM)milo Wrote: [ -> ]I don't think you need any technical knowledge at all to be able to comment about specifically what works or doesn't for you - indeed it may be easier without it.

Ha, I just crit something and the OP had to point out why it was technically wrong, I just knew something didn't sit right.

I think we just have to read something enough times to figure out what we like or don't, for me it is usually just about giving a piece the time it deserves.
(09-22-2015, 11:34 AM)peacejazzspirit Wrote: [ -> ]
(09-22-2015, 11:19 AM)milo Wrote: [ -> ]I don't think you need any technical knowledge at all to be able to comment about specifically what works or doesn't for you - indeed it may be easier without it.

True... but a little more technical knowledge wouldn't hurt me Smile

I don't think it hurts anyone but i do think commenting can be easier without it.  some of the best poems I have read on this site had enough technical issues to bog down the critique forever.  Thing is, technical issues can be fixed with a few editing passes - a dull poem really can't.
(09-22-2015, 11:37 AM)milo Wrote: [ -> ]
(09-22-2015, 11:34 AM)peacejazzspirit Wrote: [ -> ]
(09-22-2015, 11:19 AM)milo Wrote: [ -> ]I don't think you need any technical knowledge at all to be able to comment about specifically what works or doesn't for you - indeed it may be easier without it.

True... but a little more technical knowledge wouldn't hurt me Smile

I don't think it hurts anyone but i do think commenting can be easier without it.  some of the best poems I have read on this site had enough technical issues to bog down the critique forever.  Thing is, technical issues can be fixed with a few editing passes - a dull poem really can't.

I agree, and for me writing poetry is like playing music: I want to know why things are what they are, so I do spend plenty of time (not necessarily liking all of it, but my curiosity keeps things interesting) on fundamentals/technical things. Then, once I have grasped that understanding and practiced it I don't have to think about it when I'm creating something in the moment. Oh isn't spontaneous art just beautiful? *spins around throws hands up in the air*
Oh for writing I think technical skills are very important. I just don't think they produce the most useful comments.
(09-22-2015, 12:09 PM)milo Wrote: [ -> ]Oh for writing I think technical skills are very important. I just don't think they produce the most useful comments.

So I could say,

Milo, there should be a semicolon after important instead of a period!

or I could say,

Milo, I think you could have phrased the last sentence in a more interesting way, perhaps: "I think they are monopolizing space in which more valuable comments could reside." Or something to that tune.
(09-22-2015, 12:21 PM)peacejazzspirit Wrote: [ -> ]
(09-22-2015, 12:09 PM)milo Wrote: [ -> ]Oh for writing I think technical skills are very important. I just don't think they produce the most useful comments.

So I could say,

Milo, there should be a semicolon after important instead of a period!

or I could say,

Milo, I think you could have phrased the last sentence in a more interesting way, perhaps: "I think they are monopolizing space in which more valuable comments could reside." Or something to that tune.

exactly.  The first is just an editing suggestion and will in no way make the poem better or even help me to make the poem better, just more technically correct.  The second lets me know there is a fundamental flaw in the writing that needs to be fixed so I know where to focus and why.

I think it is good courtesy to point out editing suggestions but I wouldn't consider a post with only editing suggestions to be acceptable commentary for a workshop.
I've just posted a new triolet, I hope you like it and give awesomely helpful, non-technical feedback as with my previous attempt. Smile
(09-22-2015, 12:40 PM)peacejazzspirit Wrote: [ -> ]I've just posted a new triolet, I hope you like it and give awesomely helpful, non-technical feedback as with my previous attempt. Smile

I usually stick to technical feedback in the practice threads - they are for mastering the forms after all.  Wink
(09-22-2015, 11:19 AM)milo Wrote: [ -> ]I don't think you need any technical knowledge at all to be able to comment about specifically what works or doesn't for you - indeed it may be easier without it.

I think this is true but not for serious workshopping. For beginners like me that's an area to strictly observe, analyze and digest. I could be wrong but I feel like if you don't have a comment for each and every line like Mark or guys like him then you're kinda defeating the purpose of the Serious Workshop, and maybe even creating static? Correct me if I'm wrong but that's just me.
while a line by line is common in serious it's doesn't have to be objective, it can be subjective, how does each line or phrase affect you personally, where and why doesn't it work for you in particular, why does it work for you in particular. both objective and subjective feedback helps the poet, for the critic is can either or both they give. i find i go more with the subjective point of view in my feedback. when we learn to drive we go on all the roads, not just on the avenue where our house is. we have to stretch in order to grow. that said i also try and be objective if it's not my style of poetry.
(09-22-2015, 04:21 PM)billy Wrote: [ -> ]while a line by line is common in serious it's doesn't have to be objective, it can be subjective, how does each line or phrase affect you personally, where and why doesn't it work for you in particular, why does it work for you in particular. both objective and subjective feedback helps the poet, for the critic is can either or both  they give. i find i go more with the subjective point of view in my feedback. when we learn to drive we go on all the roads, not just on the avenue where our house is. we have to stretch in order to grow. that said i also try and be objective if it's not my style of poetry.

This is true, but as a beginner I find myself holding my tongue more often than not still due to the fact I'd hate to praise a poem that isn't technically correct, and if you're writing in form it seems that should be the most important part? It would be like if I post something in iambic pentameter but it wasn't IP, wouldn't the technical aspect be the more important side to address? Would the poem still hold value if it wasn't true to form? Again this is only regarding Serious Workshopping.
(09-22-2015, 04:47 PM)Weeded Wrote: [ -> ]
(09-22-2015, 04:21 PM)billy Wrote: [ -> ]while a line by line is common in serious it's doesn't have to be objective, it can be subjective, how does each line or phrase affect you personally, where and why doesn't it work for you in particular, why does it work for you in particular. both objective and subjective feedback helps the poet, for the critic is can either or both  they give. i find i go more with the subjective point of view in my feedback. when we learn to drive we go on all the roads, not just on the avenue where our house is. we have to stretch in order to grow. that said i also try and be objective if it's not my style of poetry.

This is true, but as a beginner I find myself holding my tongue more often than not still due to the fact I'd hate to praise a poem that isn't technically correct, and if you're writing in form it seems that should be the most important part? It would be like if I post something in iambic pentameter but it wasn't IP, wouldn't the technical aspect be the more important side to address? Would the poem still hold value if it wasn't true to form? Again this is only regarding Serious Workshopping.

The value of a poem isn't in its correct form, the form is just a tool. If the reader doesn't find something he wants to return to again and again then what does it matter if the form is technically correct? For me, learning forms only since I came here, it is difficult to do both at the same time, write a good poem in a form. It does happen every now and then and is slowly getting within reach. There are poets here who do so with regularity, the poem so engaging that you don't even realize until afterwards that a form has pulled it along.

I too am cautious about critting in Serious as I can not usually write at that level, but I really think the key here is devoting time to it. If you read a piece you like enough times it will start to sink in what about it apppeals you, and possibly a minor flaw. It's fine to post crit in serious that just explains in detail your own interaction with the poem, if you can explain your read it will surely help the OP, if only not to cut the line or word that moved people but no one bothered to mention.

All critique is valuable when the readers takes to time to get to know the poem and then honestly express themselves.
An entry post that was deleted:
Quote:Religion is such a touchy subject to even speak of these days... let alone write about and request advice on. Me being a non-believer, if I were so inclined I could easily "bash" this piece of yourself that I'm sure you're proud of. I wonder if this is the best subject to write on.

If the poster had read the important threads of the forum they had posted in, Novice, they might have understood that no subject is off limits and disliking the POV is no reason to bash a poem or be unable to give it a fair critique.
(09-27-2015, 04:40 PM)ellajam Wrote: [ -> ]An entry post that was deleted:
Quote:Religion is such a touchy subject to even speak of these days... let alone write about and request advice on. Me being a non-believer, if I were so inclined I could easily "bash" this piece of yourself that I'm sure you're proud of. I wonder if this is the best subject to write on.

If the poster had read the important threads of the forum they had posted in, Novice, they might have understood that no subject is off limits and disliking the POV is no reason to bash a poem or be unable to give it a fair critique.

There is something seriously awry with the backbone of this thread. The "serious" forum we are all trembling over is for "serious workshopping" where contributors post their work to as high a standard of completion as they can possibly achieve ON THEIR OWN. No one ever suggested that critique in "serious" must be in any way of a higher calibre than in any other forum. It is the posted POEM which must be as near perfect as achievable without the benefit of critique...that is to say, the valid "opinion" of ALL members.
If I have got this wrong then shoot me down and call me Cadaver.
Best,
Tectak
(09-27-2015, 10:46 PM)tectak Wrote: [ -> ]
(09-27-2015, 04:40 PM)ellajam Wrote: [ -> ]An entry post that was deleted:
Quote:Religion is such a touchy subject to even speak of these days... let alone write about and request advice on. Me being a non-believer, if I were so inclined I could easily "bash" this piece of yourself that I'm sure you're proud of. I wonder if this is the best subject to write on.

If the poster had read the important threads of the forum they had posted in, Novice, they might have understood that no subject is off limits and disliking the POV is no reason to bash a poem or be unable to give it a fair critique.

There is something seriously awry with the backbone of this thread. The "serious" forum we are all trembling over is for "serious workshopping" where contributors post their work to as high a standard of completion as they can possibly achieve ON THEIR OWN. No one ever suggested that critique in "serious" must be in any way of a higher calibre than in any other forum. It is the posted POEM which must be as near perfect as achievable without the benefit of critique...that is to say, the  valid "opinion" of ALL members.
If I have got this wrong then shoot me down and call me Cadaver.
Best,
Tectak

IMO this post was about the poster, not the poem and didn't contribute anything the OP could use. It's a good thing we have more than one mod/admin to review Newly Registered members' posts, that way no one opinion rules the site.
Critique is not the same as writing a poem. You don't need to be able to write at the same level as what you critique. It simply requires that you have an opinion and commit. Holding back because you're concerned about being wrong is shortsighted given how subjective critique is. I think most people fail at critique not because they don't have a technical understanding, but they have too big of an ego to be wrong (hidden behind false humility). They don't engage the poem. They don't commit. They don't work to understand it. Their critique then comes off as vague and unhelpful.

I think milo's point is well made. Dull poems are the problem. You can't breathe life into crap. The poem has to have some spark that makes it interesting. Sterile crap is still sterile crap--even if perfectly executed. I'm actually not even looking for perfect or near perfect poems in Serious. I'm looking for something that makes me want to love it. Sometimes the problem with critique isn't that you don't know the terms or methods, its that you don't have the confidence to read a poem and shrug. You need to be able to shrug and say why you did it. Or let the poem die alone and find one that interests you.
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