Long ago (in a galaxy far, far away) I work-shopped a novel in an online writing workshop. One of the draws of the workshop was the “Editor’s Choice”: a professional critique given by the editor in residence to two lucky selections a month. I had the honor of having a chapter selected as “Editor’s Choice” one month. The editor was a scifi writer that I hugely respect. His critique, in retrospect, was kind and encouraging. At the time, it literally made me puke. Several times.
Why? Because he’d chosen a sex scene to review. It was the first sex scene I’d posted in public, anywhere. I was incredibly uncomfortable posting it, and incredibly uncomfortable with his review. I focused on the one negative thing he said to the exclusion of all else, decided I couldn’t write sex scenes, and didn’t publish another sex scene for several years.
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