Since I mention my critique groups on a regular basis, I wanted to take this post to encourage each of you to find a group if you don’t already have one. A critique group is an invaluable asset to any writer.
- They cheer you on when you’re in the dumps.
- They help you improve individual pieces of writing.
- They push you to try new things.
- They can even help you find markets for your work . . .
- . . . or let you know when an editor is looking for something in particular.
When you look for a critique group, don’t get discouraged if you can’t find one right away or if you can’t find one that is a good fit. Here are some of the things that you might look at:
What people write. Picture book writing is very different from novel writing so if you are the only novelist you might not get the help you need.
Why people write. People who write to publish often have very different goals than people who write simply to put down their stories.
Publishing choices. If your focus is traditional publishing, a group focused on self-publishing may not meet your needs.
Keep your ears and eyes open and you’ll find the writers you need to help you grow. Ask around at conferences. Chat with people on-line. Anywhere you meet your fellow writers, there are possibilities. A good critique group is worth the wait and the effort.