Tomorrow is the monthly Insecure Writer's Support Group post, and I will have a word or two to say about confidence, what it means, and how to get it. The last few months have been interesting for me, because it seems that just as I started talking about reviews and the overly positive reviews that have been flooding the bookwaves, so did a lot of other people. "Real" people that get to talk about these things on Slate and in the New York Times and a score of other places. I've been reading these articles which have echoed my thoughts on the matter, which has been nice, because, initially, I thought I might be off my rocker. Not only have people been talking about it but there have been being some serious studies done on the tsunami of (almost only) positive feedback flooding our world. Recently, NPR had one of these psychologists on one of their shows, so in preparation to tomorrow's post, I figured I'd let you guys listen to it, since it doesn't fit into my post the way I want it to. So go listen to this. It's short.
And, because they talk about it, I just want to mention something related to this "sandwich" method of delivering negative news. A totally separate study (which I don't have the link to) recently found that about 80% of people have virtually no retention of things they view as negative. The study had to do with gambling addiction, the economic collapse of '08 and other things of that nature. We look back and wonder how "we" can lose so much, but, going into a situation, most people (because 80% is most) literally can't see the possible negative outcomes, even when presented with them. Especially when presented with them as an option weighed against some possible positive outcome. The negative outcome completely evaporates from their minds.
All of that to say that another study showed that that whole "sandwich" way of delivering negative criticism (No, that's not redundant, because a criticism is looking at something in a critical manner, which, then, delivers positive criticism and negative criticism. Potentially.) is completely ineffective, because, well, 80% (or more) of people can't retain the negative part of whatever was said when it's presented with the positive stuff.
I'll leave that for you guys to work out. Or you can come back tomorrow and see what I have to say about it.