Apparently the above line (or a variation there of) is something that is heard a lot by the folks in the publishing industry. Aspiring writers everywhere give their precious manuscripts to their friends/parents/children to read and are heaped with praise and figure it is ready to go to print.
I give my writing to these people too and I get the heaps of praise too. But I don't think that their seal of approval means it is book-ready. I know that I need objective opinions of other writers and I've started to seek those out (thank you new critique group!). However, I would like to say that the gushing of family and friends is very important to the writer.
By it's nature, writing is an exercise in rejection. So, having some people say, "This is fantastic!" is good for the soul and ego. And I have to tell you, I discovered the best praise yesterday. I have a story that I'm submitting to a magazine that I based on my oldest son, William. It is a modified story about when he got his "real" tool box. William has been very interested in this idea of me writing stories and he asked to read it. He started laughing so hard he was turning pink. Now, I know that this laugh came from the fact that it was based on him as well as his mother's humor (because let's face it...I formed his sense of humor!). But then he asked me to print it out and he took it downstairs to read to his brother, Henry.
Even if that story never sees the pages of a magazine, hearing William giggle as he read it to Henry made the writing totally worth it.