We here at Write All Nite endorse experimentations of all kinds.
For example: I’m a firm believer that criticism desperately needs a makeover of form. For decades, reviews have boiled down to thumbs-up or thumbs-down, sometimes hitting upon legitimate insights along the way. But at a time when most people crowdsource for opinions online, individuals critics must forsake their former position as taste-making arbiters of quality.
A piece should not try to convince a reader whether or not to see a work of art based on what the writers believes is good or bad; you know what they say about opinions and assholes. Rather, criticisms should transform into critiques, in which we surveyors of the arts attempt to make sense of that art, not judging it, but analyzing it for the enlightenment of others.
I do think that the best reviews can find a way to combine the two, with subjective judgements and analytical assessments existing side by side.
But it’s hard.
And I haven’t totally figured out a way to pull it off yet.
But I’m going to keep trying!
And now, this trying manifests itself in a two-part review of Cyprus Avenue. Yesterday’s missive contained conventional criticisms; tomorrow brings my personally-preferred critiques (today’s primer you’re reading right now is already long enough on its own!). Hopefully one day I’ll solve how to merge these two approaches. But until that day comes, you’ll have to deal with this admittedly-inferior bifurcated structure.
Now let’s critique…