I was thinking about this. The other day, someone told me they “liked” a story I had written. That was nice to hear. And someone said the chicken was “good.” I have heard others say (not about me or my talents in this area), that the person’s living room looked “nice.” All good.
But how much better if we describe what we see/ hear/ experience! Describing gives constructive feedback, and allows the person to form their OWN judgment, and begin to learn to rely less on the judgments of others.
Your story drew me in right away- I immediately began to wonder about the characters, what would happen to them, why they acted the way they did. Your description of the marketplace scene was so vivid I could easily imagine myself right there. I can picture the people in your story in my mind perfectly.
That chicken last night had just the right blend of something hot and spicy (curry, maybe?). It was well done, tender, and fell off the bone.
The way your living room is decorated makes me feel perfectly at home and comfortable. That single picture over the couch draws the eye as soon as you enter the room. And the colors are warm and soothing.
In these examples, the person can think about what is being said, then decide, “Yes, I am a ‘good’ story writer/ cook/ interior decorator.” It is a much more effective way of sharing than saying, “That was good. I liked it.”
The other corollary to this is that it requires you to PAY attention to detail. So often we rush through things, the world passes us by without our noticing much. We eat, enjoying the food, but not really savoring the tastes and nuances. We like being in a room, but never thought about why. The story interests us, but we never think about what we like about it.
It is good and rewarding to enjoy the creation we are surrounded with, to not just let it slide by.