Cover of Critique


I went to my creative writing teacher’s office to discuss my novel-in-progress. He pulled it up on his laptop and began.

“For one thing, too many words.”

Too many words, I wrote in my notebook. 

“Not enough periods. Sentences too long. Dialogue not realistic.”

All sentences and dialogue garbage. 

“The ending poorly executed.”

Amateur hour.

“Middle section too long. Cut in half.”

Be ruthless.

“Downhill after first paragraph.”

Expand first paragraph into novel.

“Title no good.”

Browse library and steal title from book no one has heard of.

“Fewer interior monologues.”

Get rid of self-absorbed introspective bullshit.

“Flying trees?”

Yes, in my dreams.

“No dream sequences.”

What about Macbeth? 

“As satire, it misses the mark.”

Go to nearest bridge and jump.

“Page 29 is missing. Or you left it blank, I’m not sure.”

It was a metaphor.

“Complete absence of metaphors. Superficial in all respects.”

The flying flag of an idiot.

“Third paragraph on page 57: that’s your story.”

Plunder. Exploit. Create.

“Minimize repetition.”

Get to the point.

“Essentially a series of clichés strung together into a panorama of the obvious.”

Dumb, a waste of time.

“Otherwise shows potential.”

Feeling hopeful. 

“Very ambitious.”

Ego expanding.

“Your best work yet.”


“That’s all for today.”

Thank you.