Thursday, April 28, 2011

Critics and lovers

Most of my boyfriends have had some sort of interest in writing, either through traditional journalism or more creative stuff.

Fortunately, this makes for all sorts of book discussions and grammar debates. Unfortunately, it also allows for inevitable fights spurred by "honest" critiques.

"Hey, read this and tell me what you think."

When not handled appropriately, that line can be the kiss of death in a romantic relationship between two writers.

The thought crossed my mind after reading this essay: "My editor, my wife." An excerpt:

Though her criticisms are often less than gentle ("I'm going to throw up" is a representative margin note), she makes my work better. Much, much better. I save her marked-up manuscripts as an unluckier husband might save love letters.

Letting someone read your writing -- and genuinely listening to his/her critiques -- is an indication of the seriousness of your relationship.

If your romance can survive a red pen's wrath, it's likely on the right track.