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Critique Groups August 25, 2010

Posted by Ronica Stromberg in Uncategorized.
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Critiquing a manuscript

 

I’m involved in two local critique groups, one for children’s writers like me and one for writers of varied interests. I met with the second group last Saturday, and we took pictures. Here are a couple. (I’m the writer in the pink top.)  

A critique group meeting

Most of the writers in my critique groups have fewer publishing credits than I do. Still, I rely on their critiques to help me improve my work. Even unpublished writers usually read extensively and can provide insights on what does or doesn’t work in a piece. I’ve read enough books on writing and attended enough writing classes and conferences to discern fairly well what advice hits the target and what misses the mark. Both groups are on target more than off.  

And it’s fun to spend time with others who love language and communicating meaning through stories. As we respond to one another’s manuscripts, we open our lives to all. In the four years I’ve been in these groups, I’ve developed close friendships. I look forward to Saturday morning critiques.  

One caveat about posting these photographs:  The background (a group member’s backyard) looks lovely and it was. But, lest I give anyone the notion that writers need such idyllic surroundings to write, let me just say I’ve written in buses and at bars, on napkins and on notebooks, during lectures and performances, at work (only when I had nothing else to do, of course!–ahem) and totally alone in the middle of the night. Surroundings don’t make much difference. Writing takes me away from all that anyway.  

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