One of the easiest and worst things you can do, as a writer, is lose your own voice. I don't mean a sore throat. I mean, losing your voice in your actual written work.
Asking for and implementing feedback/constructive criticism into your written work is a great way to help it reach its full potential!
However, if you decide to implement ALL feedback from ALL different kinds of people, you may end up writing something that is not really YOU. Here are 5 ways you can implement feedback, while still keeping your own voice in your written work:
1. It's okay to be picky: You do not need to implement EVERY feedback you receive. YOU are the writer. YOU understand your work best.
2. Go back to the "start line:" When editing your written work, read it again from the beginning. That way, you are still following the track to the "finishing line." Apart from my metaphorical use of the term, DO NOT race there. Take your time, be thorough!
3. Ask the 5 W's and H: It is important not to forget the reason behind your story.
-Who is your target readership (ex. women aged 18-25)? Who is the protagonist? Who are the characters?
-What was the protagonist's goal? What message/lesson do you want the readers to
take from your written work?
-When and where is the story set?
-Why did you start writing this?
-How does your protagonist reach his/her goal? How will you structure your writing?
4. The Plan: Review your checklist, outline or mind map. Review your list of characters and descriptions. Do this on a regular basis to keep reminding yourself of the necessary details. Consistency is key and it is easy to lose that when we take our coffee breaks.
5. Pep-Talk: Sometimes we just need to take in a deep breath and remind ourselves, we are writers and we should be proud of ourselves. Don't beat yourself up if you feel like the feedback is overwhelming. Don't let the pressure of HAVING TO change get to you. In the end, you don't HAVE TO do anything, but believe in yourself.