I wrote a short story in Chinese, which is a language I'm learning. I want to share it with my friends (here in China, on Chinese.SE, and on Facebook) for people to enjoy (and hopefully inspire me to write more). However, I fear what will happen if I do so: some native Chinese speakers will go through it carefully and send me corrections. What's so bad about this?

  • At some point, I have to accept it "as is". I can't keep editing it forever. (I'm already half-way through writing another, far more complicated story.) It's meant to be a "snapshot" of my language, so in the future I can see how much I've improved; I'm deliberately not fixing everything.

  • The corrections may not be at my level, which makes them useless for me (at least, for now). Or even worse, the corrections might completely rewrite the story.

  • I have a teacher who does not want me spending time on this: we're working on other things. I don't have time to edit it again and again.

Thus, I'd be forced to ignore the corrections, which will appear rude after they may have spent a large amount of time suggesting corrections. I also don't want them to waste their time.

Question: How can I politely explain that I don't want corrections on a Chinese short story I wrote and want to share?

  • 1
    What you are saying sounds completely reasonable. Why do you think you can't include a short form of the explanation as a preface to the story? In particular, the first point, that you want to keep it "as is" so you can see progress later on, seems very compelling.
    – DaveG
    Feb 28, 2020 at 0:47
  • I think that's what I'm stuck doing. In fact, I did so on Chinese.SE. Feb 28, 2020 at 0:48
  • Hey Rebecca! It seems that you have shared your story with a small explanation at the beginning. So, do you think you could self answer your question with what you did and how it worked out? I would be happy to upvote it.
    – Ael
    May 15, 2020 at 7:33

1 Answer 1


You could add, at the end or at the beginning as an author's note, that you are new to this and you are still learning, so "please pardon my mistakes. However, constructive criticism is appreciated." That way, you will know your mistakes, and will be able to build up on them later. Even if the corrections are not understandable at this level, but later on, if you look back on them, they may actually be very helpful.

  • 1
    He is trying to avoid what might be seen as constructive criticism.
    – Touniouk
    Sep 17, 2020 at 10:19

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