My Critique Group

Last night was our regularly scheduled meeting but we were missing two members.

Brent, our one and only man, had a business appointment. He's important to the group as he bring a male perspective to whatever we're writing. Often, it's something like, "A man would never think that way." Or he'll set us straight about something mechanical or about a car and anything to do with horses or ranch life.

Christi is our youngest member and a grammar school teacher. I love her critiques--she looks at things in a fresh and modern way. Her daughter is soon to be married and Christi has other things on her mind at the moment.

Besides me, the other two regulars in attendance were Jann who writes fantastic poetry and is far more literary than I am. She has a different view of the world than I do and has wonderful insights into what we've all written--and Shirley.

Shirley founded the group many years ago as a college class. Since that time, it has gone through many phases, sometimes with too many members, at other times with members who mainly wanted to get together socially, but mostly it has been a group for serious writers wanting to make their written word better. Shirley was an honors English teacher for many years and we can always count on her to make sure our grammar is correct--but she also is a great editor.

Having my critique group hear and critique my chapter is like the first edit. This is so important to me because I know they will catch many things that I've missed. One thing I've learned, is that they often don't agree and each one catches different things.

We print out enough copies for each person to have one to write on as the author reads. Reading aloud helps me to catch problems too. Of course I don't always agree with their suggestions, but there's no need to argue about it. Often, if they've noticed something, it means I need to take a second look.

I love my critique group and know that they have definitely helped me with all of my writing and my published books.



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