Criticism is poison dart whose effects linger long after the words are slung. Some bloggers call their critics "trolls", and disregard them or even unpublish their comments. I'm just not comfortable operating that way, in a rainbow world where I've skewed reality in my favor, keeping only those who agree with me around.
That doesn't make criticism any easier to handle, though. I went looking for advice last week as I tried to sort through some criticism, and several wise friends told me to look for the nugget of truth in the muddy mess before cleaning it up. I found it, thought about it all week, and I think it will affect how I write and think in the future. The next step is forgiveness for the hurt that accompanies receiving criticism - and hopefully forgiveness on the part of the person who I offended. Colossians 3:13 says, "Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive."
Criticism comes and goes. And there are certainly people who "troll" blogs just to stir up trouble. How do you handle criticism of your writing - your life? Does it make a difference to you whether the critic is an "IRL" friend or a random blog reader?