Listening to the end of year addition of The Writer and the Critic podcast, my interest was tweaked by a discussion about whether authors should review other authors work.
What occurred to me as I listened was that in most other arts critics are not fellow artists. Music, film, sculpture, paintings, photography, theater… these arts have traditionally been reviewed by professional critics who – while they might have a background in the art form – are not practising artists.
This is famously what critics get picked on for, particularly the harsher ones.
What I started to wonder was, what as a writer would I prefer? To be reviewed by a person who’s an expert in criticism, or to be reviewed by a fellow writer? Not that those things are mutually exclusive.
Or, should writing only be given the democratic review process that is now possible through online rating sites that allow non-writing readers to comment and allocate stars? In the end we’re writing for them after-all.
I’m still thinking about this one.