Received notes on my manuscript from a friend in the mail. Great comments, as usual. Got stopped, as usual. In the interim I revised a short story and wrote a whole new one – this was refreshing, since I hadn’t written anything new in a long time. It was proof that I had not forgotten how.
I have to remind myself to be discerning when I accept notes from people. I had a creative writing professor who warned against prescriptive comments – both giving and receiving. These are the types of specific notes like “you should kill off x character,” or “you should have x character’s back-story be that he was beaten by his father,” etc. When giving notes, a person’s focus should be what the writer wants the story to be. When receiving notes, an author should be wary of prescriptive ideas not his/her own.