How to Get Constructive Writing Feedback

We’ve already addressed how to give constructive feedback with our discussion over TAG and Compliment Sandwiches. But I found this really helpful when I read it, so I want to share it here along with the link to the full article by Suzanne Davis.

This 4-step process will help you get valuable comments and suggestions from your writing group.

  1. Before members read your writing, share your areas of concernWhat do you want your group members to focus on when they read your writing? Are you worried about a part of your draft? Do you struggle with an aspect of writing?When you share your writing issues, group members will give you specific details on them. 
  2. As members share their comments, listen and take notes.Don’t interrupt others and be defensive. 
  3. Ask questions about the comments.  If someone makes a general comment, ask him/her to be more specific.  Here you can follow-up and explain what you wanted to accomplish and get any other answers you need.
  4. Thank people for their help. Share what you found valuable and helpful. This step will help others give more insightful advice in the future.

The mission of any writing group is to nurture and support all the members.  The best writing feedback focuses on helping a writer grow. Keep that at the heart of everything you do in your writing group, and you’ll have a community that benefits everyone.