My first experience with a critique group

Angry_mob_of_four It could get ugly.
Then again, it could be the best experience I’ve ever had while not in a horizontal position.

While at the RWA conference, I’m going to participate in the Carina Press Critique Group. Basically, I sit down with four other writers and an editor, Kerri Buckley.  All the writers are given each other’s manuscripts beforehand to read and comment on. During our meeting, each author has fifteen minutes of fame, as it were. The other writers all comment on the story, what they liked, what absolutely stunk beyond the possibility of redemption could be improved on.

Four other writers and an editor all talking about something I wrote? In person? To my face? I figure I have two choices. I can either:

a) Go down in flames

ADVANCE FOR SUNDAY AUG. 22--FILE--This photo, taken during the initial explosion of the Hindenburg, shows the 804-foot German zeppelin just before subsequent explosions sent the ship crashing to the ground at Lakehurst Naval Air Station in Lakehurst, N.J., May 6, 1937. The roaring flames silhouette two men, at right atop the mooring mast, dangerously close to the blasts. The scene stimulated NBC radio broadcaster Herbert Morrison to give a memorable and highly emotion account of the disaster. (AP Photo/Philadelphia Public Ledger, HO)

b) Perceive this as an absolutely wonderful opportunity to grow as a writer.


I mean, whether they like what I wrote or hate it, this is a step forward. Every writer, even the most  dedicated hermit, needs to hear what the outside world thinks of their writing. No one is born a perfect writer. No one.

It will be interesting to see how it feels to have someone tell me these things to my face.

Angry mob: By Robert Couse-Baker (Flickr: angry mob) [CC BY 2.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons

Hindenberg: By Gus Pasquarella (US NAVY) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Butterfly: By Zeynel Cebeci (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons

This entry was posted in Carina Press, Critique Groups, RWA, Writing. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s