Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Bad Critique Groups

As a professional writer I've been involved in various critique groups over the years.

For my non-writer friends, critique groups are groups of writers who share what they're working on and make suggestions to help each other to improve their work.

Unfortunately, not all critique groups are helpful

Early in my writing career I joined a group that was a waste of time. I was writing fiction for kids and other members were writing novels, often including soft porn, for adults. When I shared my work they'd just say something like, "Very nice dear," and go on to critiquing what they considered 'real' writing.

Obviously I didn't stay in that group very long.

I was also in a couple of online critique groups that were not helpful.

One had a member who argued with every suggestion anyone made to improve his work. Since he thought it was already perfect (which it wasn't) I don't know why he even joined the group.

The other online group was started by a writer who constantly sent her newest work for critiques but never offered suggestions for anyone else. She had apparently started the group just for her own benefit.

But I have also been in some excellent critique groups and I'll share about them in my next post.

I guess there can be problem people in any group. Have you been in any groups of whatever kind  with similar problems?

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