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How to poetry review



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Fri Sep 13, 2013 5:35 am
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Monsters says...



Firstly, your job as a reviewer is to expose every flaw and everything that does not seem to have complete clarity in its meaning. To do this you must have the mindset that you demand perfection. You will expose the following; cliché, flat words, literary devices that don’t make sense or could make more sense, whether the reader is effectively portraying emotion, gobbledygook, the lack of vivid imagery and more. You should never comment on capitalization.

You have a responsibility to be honest to the writer. If you cannot find anything nice to say; tell them that they can do better. You are not only trying to give impressions as a reader but inspiring them. It is important to note that telling them that you like everything is not helping them, inspiring them, or review worthy.

Which brings me to my next point; it is just as important to expose flaws as it is to tell the writer when they are doing something right. You also need to be detailed about why it is right. The review is not always to improve one piece but to improve the writer. The writer rarely chooses to re-write a poem anyways as they likely find sentimental value in it.

It is true that you need to be honest but you don’t need to lay it on too thick. Writers tend to start off weak and get stronger at taking criticism as they get more experienced. You can break writers rather easily, especially new writers when you are to mean about it. A review is kind-of like poetry you need a certain emotion to it in order to get it just right. Examples of rude behavior are not tolerated but people choose to draw the line at different points. I will tell a writer that something is terrible but I won’t go on about how it’s the worst thing I ever read blah blah blah. You don’t ever do that; don’t fill your words with hate for the writing but keep it honest and value the writer highly.

A review is not teaching. You tell the writer why it is bad or good and leave it there. Do not go into excessive details and babbling or belittling a writer by making a small guide on how to poetry.

You should make it a personal responsibility to be correct in everything you say. Reviews can be just as much damaging as helpful. The more you read and understand poetry the better your review will be.

Lastly, people become known for writing completely positive or negative reviews. To stay constructive both negative and positive reinforcement is required.

Thank you so much for reading.

Sincerely,
Monsters
Last edited by Monsters on Fri Mar 27, 2015 2:48 pm, edited 2 times in total.
  





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Thu Sep 19, 2013 12:38 am
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DreamWork says...



Agree with you,Monster.But I think we have our own ways to reviewing poems or stories here.For me capitalization is something important here.Although maybe they do not care, they should know and be aware of it, so that others do not 'try' to remind them in reviews.No matter what is the reason,it is up to me to review and it is up to yourself to ignore about this rule :D
This might seem less pleasant. But I do love to share ideas with interesting people like you.
Cheers,
~Dark
Dream high
  





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Thu Sep 19, 2013 3:25 am
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Monsters says...



The problem with commenting on capitalization is that it is often filled with ignorant assumptions from people who mindlessly follow rules; people who feel that all poetry must have a capital at the start of every line. This is a myth in poetry. I subscribe to the ideology that it's the writers choice in how they present their bias. Sometimes writers prefer clarity in which it is used to help elaborate the sentence structure. Sometimes it's the style of the writer in which they use or don't use capitalization to help the overall look of the writing. There are other techniques and they are almost never wrong but people comment on them anyways and it really distracts the job of the reviewer.

Another thing is that capitalization can always be changed and it won't change the flow and usually not the clarity of the poem. In fact, most capitalization from poetry was changed to satisfy the people who publish works right before publishing.

I hope that you at-least think very hardly about that before you continue to comment on capitalization. I thank you though for reading and commenting on this tutorial.

:D
  





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Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:42 am
DreamWork says...



True. I'm certainly not happy if the use of capitalization is ignored. But when listening to reason, and perhaps it is not too serious here. It can be accepted. I do not think capitalization is disrupting the flow of a poem. Of course not!
Anyway,thanks for sharing ideas here!
:D
_Best of luck
~Dark
Last edited by DreamWork on Mon Oct 14, 2013 9:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
Dream high
  





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Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:14 pm
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Tenyo says...



WHuT if I wrITE lyk DIS?
We were born to be amazing.
  





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Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:30 pm
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Monsters says...



I don't know if this deserves an answer ;p

lol
There are other techniques and they are almost never wrong


that was kind-of what I was referring too. I guess its okay to comment because thats really just makes it hard to read and understand. I would just ask them "what" or "why" but good catch!

Thanks for reading and your reply!
  





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Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:58 am
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DreamWork says...



Tenyo wrote:WHuT if I wrITE lyk DIS?


AmAzInG! 8)
Dream high
  





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Sat May 17, 2014 5:29 am
alliyah says...



I agree with you monsters in many of your points, except for on capitalization critiques. Although I completely agree that capitalization IS a stylistic, author by author choice I think it is completely fair and within the expectations of a reviewer to comment on it. Although there are no "rules" about capitalization in poetry, it is an important tool that can add emphasis, complete a thought, give respect, or destroy the flow of a line or word. A review is always the reviewers educated reader perspective opinion, and I think it is valid for them to share their opinion on how effective a writer's use of capitalization is.

I completely agree with you 100% that as a reviewer you have a responsibility to make sure what you're saying is correct though. I have came across a lot of reviews where people have suggested to add a comma in a spot where one wasn't grammatically needed or tried to make a grammar comment that was uneducated. In the end everyone should always make sure their review is constructive and wont do more harm than good!
but i don't think i can ever love someone
who doesn't understand that teal
is a different color than dark cyan.


  





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Tue May 27, 2014 1:37 pm
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Monsters says...



In the 99% of poems here, there are more inherent flaws then capitalization. It's become a way to fill up lines in a review rather than comment with much needed criticism. Also, sense everyone has their own bias we will end up just arguing about which bias is correct. You feel that capitalization will "add emphasis, complete a thought, give respect, or destroy the flow of a line or word" and I disagree. Like I said, it can always be changed but it's not important to comment on because it's more about the words, the flow and the emotion of which have nothing to do with capitalization, in my opinion.


Also, in my opinion, poetry doesn't need to be grammatically correct at all. Any punctuation constitutes a break and breaks can add much needed emphasis or allow the reader to breath, increase flow ect. Many times, correct grammar will hurt the poem by hurting the flow. I do believe many people don't realize this and say "you have to have a comma here" just because it is grammatically correct. This is a myth. You should know the rules before you break them but also look at Poe, E.E. cummings, Emily Dickenson, Shel ect. They all have clear poems but do not use correct grammar.

So it could be that they were telling the reader they should have a punctuation mark because it would help the flow. (Although, we might be giving them to much credit here lol)

Thanks for reading and commenting.
  





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Fri Mar 27, 2015 4:11 pm
SilloriaD says...



I'd hold my tongue when it comes to capitalization, but it's nearly impossible for me, as a reader, to move onto a problem when I see something that I believe to be an issue. I get hooked on that one thing, and once I've seen that one pseudo-problem, it's all down hill from there. Grammar, spelling, capitalization and punctuation are all important things in every type of writing for me. It's hard to let go of something that's been drilled into my head over and over again. Let me give an example.

On one poem I reviewed, I was not the only one to point out missing commas where they clearly were necessary. I took note of what the poem's author said. He or she asked.. "Doesn't three verbs in a row feel.. fast?"

Then there's me, sitting at my computer, glaring at the screen, and trying to figure out if the author was serious. Of course it didn't feel fast! It felt wrong! It was an outrage! I nearly punched the screen, and I screamed in frustration. My parents were more than a little worried, but I couldn't stop looking at the line, rereading it over and over again before I finally gave up. I didn't see it. I couldn't feel it. And, when a reader cannot feel what the poet's was trying to convey at all, I believe that to be the poet's fault.

Even though I just wrote this entire thing within a few minutes, I can no longer remember why I decided to go on a spiel. Oh well.
  





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Fri Mar 27, 2015 5:39 pm
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Monsters says...



@SilloriaD

We generally agree in the community that poetry is not only about the content but how it is said. That is why we criticize, comment and debate about line breaks, punctuation, white-space and even word choice. When he asks if it seems to fast he is really asking if it interrupts the rhythm. He is asking if the way we say it in our heads seems like we are going a million miles a minute and speeding past everything when it should be slower.

You want to put a comma there because of grammar but poetry doesn't follow grammar. Even your preconceived idea of capitalization being at the start of every line goes directly against grammar. Instead you warp your idea of grammar to include capitalization, white-space ect. and then conclude for sure that there should obviously be a comma. False. Most poets here and famous believe that commas, line breaks ect. effect how it is said by the reader. Most use these as tools.

I can't explain poetry to you and to do so would go off topic. I just hope that you cultivate your own idea for it by reading and studying it rather then blindly following rules.
  








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