Why and How to find a critique buddy
by Amber Kallyn
I love the saying, “You can’t see the forest for the trees”. For me, it’s all too true when it comes to my writing.
When I write, I “see” a black and white, soundless movie playing in my head. Strange, I know : )
But I know what needs to be in a story. And even when I reread and edit, I still know what should be there, and I see it there. Only, sometimes, I didn’t actually write it down.
My critique partners are great. They have no hesitation smacking me around (gently) and pointing out exactly where my writing lacks something, doesn’t make sense, or is repetitive.
That’s their job, and they do it well.
Even after many (many) years, I make mistakes. Doesn’t everyone? And they do an awesome job showing me where and how I made a mistake, and helping me grow into a better writer.
I truly believe I’m where I am today because of their help.
I’ve found it’s not just people telling me where my trees were misplanted that helps.
By critiquing other people’s stories, I’ll see their mistakes and point them out. Then, somehow, I can suddenly see them in my own writing.
It’s a nice circle, one ever growing.
So how do you find a great critique buddy or group?
I’ll be the first to admit that it can sometimes be hard. There’s a lot to build up: companionship, personalities, trust.
You can find people online, or in person.
There’s resources out there, everywhere. Blogs that match people up, yahoo groups that critique for one another.
Google it, and you’ll find a ton of resources.
My group is local.
We meet every two weeks, and exchange hard copies we bloodied with red pens.
When I first started looking for a local group, I couldn’t find any. So I took the plunge, swallowed my fear, and created my own group on Meetup.com
Then I scheduled the first meeting, positive no one would show up.
Guess what? There were over twenty people at our first meeting.
It’s taken six years, but we’re now down to a core group of eight. It’s a good number for us. Sometimes, we lose a member due to life, so we try a new person out.
It can truly be hard to find the right match, but to me, it’s totally worth it. Just make sure you’re really ready to share your work with others. Then put in the effort, the time, and it will grow from there.
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Genre – Paranormal / Vampire Romance
Rating – PG