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“Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment.” 
-Rita Mae Brown, Alma Mater

Judgment
noun
1. the ability to make a decision, or form an opinion objectively, authoritatively, and wisely, especially in matters affecting action; good sense.

Judgment from the Enchanted Tarot

When it comes to writing, there is usually a time when you will share your work with other people, writers and non, who will return their feedback to you. And if there is one thing that is hard to manage, it’s feedback that feels at odds with your own view of your work. This is where judgment comes in.

Judgment from the Rider Waite Tarot

As the creator of your work, it is up to you to take or leave any critique or advice that comes your way. It isn’t an easy call to make, because depending on the source of such feedback, you might give it a certain amount of weight that it may or may not deserve. How to know how many grains of salt you should apply to people’s feedback is something I think that you learn as you go. The more confident you are in your work, (i.e. what your intention was writing something the way you chose to write it) the more readily you can make that decision.

Judgment from the Amanda F. Palmer Tarot

I hope you liked the peeks at a few of the Judgment cards from my tarot deck collection. Interestingly, the tarot card #20, Judgement, as it pertains to work and career, represents the resolution of inner and outer conflicts, marking the end of suffering and the start of improved conditions or consciousness through spiritual evolvement or self development, bringing new purpose, meaning, or motivation to your work.

Sounds like we could all use some of that!  It seems only fitting to close with a quote from Mr. Amanda Palmer himself:


“Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.”

-Neil Gaiman

What say you about the ability of a writer to have sound judgment? In critique as well as creation… 
About the Author Corinne

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  1. A good critique will carry little or no judgement. Often we take it that way. Judgments are like dust in the wind, scattered easily when we allow them to go. Holding them does little good for us and our writing.

    1. That’s so true, Dean. And yet another reason for the writer to use their own judgment wisely to distill the intention of the critique.

      And I agree as well – holding onto and letting go of anything perceived as judgy is within the control of the recipient.

  2. I worry sometimes because I’m quite heavy handed with critiques and editing. I’m trying to give people everything that might potentially improve their work, but it’s dependent on them being able to judge for themselves where that fits in with their story.

    1. It’s hard to know, when you’re on the giving end, how much critique you should give. I think a discussion before and after the hand-off goes a long way toward helping the recipient see what you meant. But it’s a tough call anyway and ultimately, yes, the writer recipient must be the judge.

  3. I’ve heard that, for the most part, Neil Gaiman’s quote rings true. However, professional editors tend to be able to tell you what’s wrong and how you can possibly go about “fixing” it. That’s one of their many professional hats.

  4. Good use of tarot.

    For me, at least in my deck, it is more about getting off your ass and doing something. Just be sure it is your call to do something and not someone elses.

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