I thought it would be a good idea to go to my own CPs for this one to see what they do in this situation. So I'd like you to welcome my guests, Leslie Rose and Julie Musil.
Great question, Barbara! If Lisa and Leslie's views differ greatly, I first say this, "One, two, three, four, I declare a thumb war." Whoever is the victor, that's whose opinion wins. Great, right?
Just kidding. If only it were that easy.
My advice would be to trust yourself, because reading and writing tastes are totally subjective. I might read a paragraph and love it, and someone else might read it and crinkle their nose. When I'm reading my CP's manuscripts, I just try to let them know what was in my head when I read it. If our other partner disagrees, I totally respect that. It's then up to the author to decide how to handle it. She can go with my opinion, the other partner's, or she can leave it alone. Same when they read my work...I weigh the comments from both partners carefully, and then go with my gut. When we critique our partners' work, all we can do is be kind, fair, and honest, and then let the author decide how to process that information.
When I get differing opinions I use a four prong approach. First, I will try out both suggestions in a revision and see which one hits closer to the target I originally intended. Second, I may just side with the person whose comment is closer to my gut instinct. Third, I will seek a new opinion and see where it falls. Fourth, I will scrap the portion in question completely, go a whole new way with it and send it back to my CPs. Bottom line: I trust my partners deeply so if something popped out enough for one of them to comment on it then I know I need to address it.
Well there you have it! I love my CPs. Any other opinions out there? Share with each other in the comments. Personally, I like the thumb war... KIDDING!