Saturday, March 28, 2009

Critique Groups

I've been a member of three critique groups. I've met some really nice folks who still stay in touch, but Oh my gosh. I don't think I'm alone in this. You critique a story and send it back, you know the person on the other end is either going to balk or see the light. I do both. I balk, then I see the light.

You spend hours sweating over each and every word you write and put it out there for someone to, dare I say, criticize. That's what critique means. It's a humbling experience.

After the decadent ice cream binge, the denial, and the stomping of feet, you finally have to either reject or accept, sit down and put the advice to use or not. It's always been your choice and it's always going to be painful. But in the end, goshdarnit, you turn out to be a better writer and a better person, so sock it to me, I need improving.


  1. It is so hard to give a piece of your 'baby' to someone else. You pray that they think it is as good as you think it is! Are you in a group now?

  2. It's a hard thing to swallow, critiques, but the more of them you get, the more they become less personal and more like the guidelines they're meant as. It's just hard at first when you feel emotionally attached to your work.

  3. My whole point is, it's hard no matter how long you stay at it. I've been doing it for five, maybe six years with other peices. But when I first started, I was in need of a lot of help. I didn't realize it until my writing started reflecting all the help I have received. The gist of it is, I'm a better writer and a better person and that's a good thing.


  4. It's tough for sure.

    I think it's easier when you start being able to pick out a critic's strengths and weaknesses. Some critics I love their grammatical changes, but don't care much for their plot suggestions, and some are the opposite. There are some critics that are bang on every time.

    It's important to keep in mind that this is your story. don't let critics shape your writing so much so that it's no longer yours. A unique voice is important.

  5. What a fun article. I know exactly what you mean. I am not a writer but a card designer writing my own words. And most of the time people love the words but than say something that makes me crazy. Like it just like a professional. Yiks. What am I chopped liver. Smile

  6. I connected with this post...I wish this area had those groups you could email your work for critiquing but alas I have searched and no one wants to come out of the "writers closet". Yes, it hurts to hear your baby is ugly! But, we do grow from it. I am so excited about you visiting my site and in turn the results was me finding yours. I read most of the entires and will return often. Great site.