Happy New Year, my fellow creators!
Ahhh… 2017! A fresh start! There’s no time like the present to take on some new writing and/or illustrating goals. If you’re not already in a critique group, why not join one now? If you're a member of SCBWI, you can find local critique groups on your chapter's page. Take a peek. If you find a group that meets your needs, contact the group’s leader and inquire if you can observe a meeting.
Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of BIG MAGIC: CREATIVE LIVING BEYOND FEAR, recently posted a list of four questions you should ask yourself about critique partners. Here it is:
• Do I trust this person's taste and judgment?
• Does this person understand what I'm trying to create here?
• Does this person genuinely want me to succeed?
• Is this person capable of delivering the truth to me in a sensitive and compassionate manner?
It might take some time to figure this out. Be patient. In the meantime, you can work at being the best critique partner for your group’s members. If you’re already in a group, great! 2017 can be your year to engage in the process more enthusiastically. Submit more frequently! Revise more deeply! Network more vigorously!
I’m a big believer in critique groups. My critique partners help me see flaws in my work, encourage me when I’m frustrated, share important industry information and keep me from going batty!
I hope you'll leave a comment below and let me know how your group is going or ask a question if you’re not sure if a critique group is right for you.