Critique vs. Criticism: Where is the Line?

Posted by: Birgitte  :  Category: Critique Groups

This post is about critiquing other people’s work without causing too much emotional damage. I am a firm believer in critique groups, not just to get feedback on your own work, but to give feedback. There’s an old saying that the teacher learns more than the student and this couldn’t be truer for writers.

When we look at another person’s writing, we are also looking at our work. So how to keep from damaging either one?

My mentor, Gloria Kempton, is a very successful teacher, and one of the best critiquers of a writer’s work that I’ve ever met. She has the magic touch. It’s the main reason I’ve been in her “Finish Your Novel” workshop for 5 years. I credit my growth as a writer to persistence, but I doubt I would be quite as tenacious if it wasn’t for Gloria’s forthright and tangible writing advice.

Here are Gloria’s tips on how to give good crit, and make your own story better in the process.

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The Writing & Critique Group Survival Guide…and Me

Posted by: Claudine Rogers  :  Category: Critique Groups

I realized I needed a critique group soon after my first attempt at writing a novel. I process things best by bouncing ideas off of others and I needed the help of wiser, less emotionally attached writers to perfect my far-from-perfect WIP. But I was also getting pretty lonesome all by myself at the keyboard.  I needed that social interaction. Thus, my first foray into critique groups.

Thanks to my first group, I knew immediately when something wasn’t working, but they were unable to help me figure out why.  So I quit that group and joined another. The second group of perfectly nice people still didn’t fill the bill. I was afraid I’d never find a group that fit, or worse, that I wasn’t cut out for group critiques. Until…

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