Have you ever received feedback for your stories?

While I may not resonate with every suggestion I receive, I value feedback, particularly when it’s coming from a show producer I aspire to collaborate with. They know their own shows better than anybody else. Their insights into what resonates with their audience are invaluable. I am open to making subtle adjustments tailored to their shows, eager to observe how their audience responds to these nuanced variations.

However, there was a particular instance when grappling with feedback was a significant challenge for me. The suggestions provided were diametrically opposed to my creative intentions, urging a shift towards telling rather than showing, and advocating for the inclusion of redundancies and extraneous details that added little value to the narrative. When I received it, my mind encountered a momentary resistance. It was difficult to assimilate and process the information. There was no suggestion I could accept. Also, the feedback came at the last minute. Time was ticking. If I ignore them all, is it disrespectful? I found myself at a crossroads, navigating the fine line between artistic integrity and personal relationships.

Faced with uncertainty, I sought guidance from my mentor, Jane Morris. Although she shared my disagreement with the feedback, she encouraged me to approach it from a different perspective. “Consider the purpose,” she advised. “What is the underlying goal the person is trying to achieve with these suggestions? What elements might be lacking in your story?” It was in that moment that I felt a breakthrough, as if emerging from the other side of a tunnel.

Instead of passively accepting the feedback, I dissected the suggestions, dismissed some, and crafted my own modifications tailored to my creative vision. After all, it did help me improve my story. The culmination of this effort was met with a priceless reaction from the audience, particularly in response to the very last change I implemented.

When you face with feedback that doesn’t align with your perspective, consider approaching it from a different angle. Reflect on what might be missing in your story, and use this insight to refine your narrative in the future.

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