Saturday, March 21, 2009
Who and What of Critique Groups
The value of a critique group depends partly on who is in it, and who is in charge. How many of the other members are published writers and how often have they been published? If they're mostly just amateurs playing around with the idea of maybe getting a book published someday the group probably won't be very helpful to a person seriously interested in writing. But if they're all accomplished professionals, a newbie probably won't fit in. Ideally at least some members should have been published and the other members should be serious about writing.
What the members write also makes a difference. I once attended a group where most members wrote sexy romance novels and, since I was writing fiction for kids, the group was no help. Some groups critique discuss work in all genres, while others only do certain kinds of writing. If you're looking for a critique group be sure at least some other members know enough about the sort of thing you write to be helpful to you.