I know this might be old news to a few of you, but for those that are hearing it new, I received my first negative set of “Notes” from a writing competition. Now these notes of constructive criticism were paid for with the entry fees. I had gotten one set of notes telling about what areas I can improve, grammatical errors, formatting errors and what they really liked about the story. They also included they felt the script was about one or two drafts away from being a Winner, basically. I made changes, edited the errors, used those notes as best I could, then I resubmitted for another set of paid notes. Now when the next set of notes came, it was obviously from a different reader/judge. You can tell by the way they spoke. They didn’t like anything about the story. It seemed like they were telling me to completely rewrite or scrub the story. The most interesting character, they said, was the one whose name is just dropped because he’s a mystery character. LOL Now, I will tell you what I think about these notes. I take them very seriously. They make me laugh and they make me worry. First, they make me laugh because of how vehemently this person did NOT like my story. I’m talking, AT ALL! Second, I have to set these notes to the side for now. At a writer, my first instinct is to make changes or throw it away. We writers wear our work and hearts on our sleeves, I think. Here’s why I’m not doing either for the time being, though. So far, this story has gotten Finalist and Semi-Finalist position in four different competitions already. If I make the drastic changes this particular judge suggests, it would be in poor choice. I can’t base changes THAT major on one opinion after so many other people have found it to be worthy of awards. I WILL hold onto them, however, in case someone else ever gives me similar notes. It’s THEN that I will consider changes they are suggesting.
As a side note, I couldn’t help but be a little perplexed at the contradictions that were being said between the two different judges. The first suggested one way of a format for how to write “Off screen” dialogue and the second suggested the way I had it to begin with. So, again, I will leave it the way it is and just accept that I didn’t win this contest this go around. This was a second time submitting to this competition, I had hoped to win this go around. Obviously I am not what they are looking for. And I am NOT bitter about it. I understand that THIS is the gig. THIS is what script writing involves. And that THIS will not be my first negative review or competition to tell me I’m not their cup of tea. And I’m content with that.