Do you critique other writers?
We are not going to find all the errors on our own. Finding like-minded people to read over our works is a valuable tool.
Why should you read others? You will want people to return the favor and help you out as you are helping them out. It will also strengthen your writing as you see how others do it, mistakes that you find in theirs you might be doing as well.
Not just that, but the camaraderie of being with other writers is such a big boost. Who else gets what it takes to write a novel?
But as you are going over the works, do you give a positive? It should not all be about what this writer did wrong. We need to know where we got it right to know we got it right. Would you want that from someone else?
I have been in a meeting where the writers would drone on about what I did wrong. It came to a point where I said out loud to no one in particular, “Good grief, did I do anything right?”
I hadn’t meant it to be loud, but people heard me. Quickly, a few offered where I had gotten things right. It should not have taken me to express myself for that to happen.
Like anything else, we are humans, and to go on repeatedly what we are doing wrong won’t be met with open arms and happy hearts.
If you critique, find something the person did right. It will lift them. After all, how would you feel if this happened to you?
I would suspect not very good.