Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Insecure Writers Support Group, Critique

Time again for the ISWG post, created by Alex J. Cavanuah. To read what others  have posted go here.

I'm not feeling insecure at the moment, but I am feeling a little frustrated. I've been trying to find quality critique partners for some time. My health is finally on the mend enough to allow me to concentrate on my writing and my art for book covers. Critique is an integral part of writing.

What is critique? You may ask.

There are two kinds of critique, maybe more.

Line critique which generally checks for grammar and spelling.

Story critique which checks for the following:
Back story
POV shift
Show don't tell
Plot and more.

I'm very good at the latter.

It is very important that when you send your writing to a critique partner that you first re-read what you have written more than once and correct as much as you can. Our time is valuable, to send off your rough draft is rude.

How to read your critique:
It's important to remember that all critique is opinion. However, much of it is educated opinion. 99% of the time it will be spot on, so consider revising what has been recommended. However, if you really disagree with the comment you shouldn't revise it. If your critique partner didn't understand something, there's a good chance the reader won't either.

So now you've written your story, you've had it critiqued, do you need a beta reader. Not really. Do you need an editor? Absolutely. Especially for those of you who are self publishing. Hire and editor. I know several if you need a reference.

So, that's it for now.

Come and join me for the Write...Edit...Publish challenge later this month. Title: Changing Faces. Go here to learn more.



Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

My critique partners rock (and they are very funny) and I usually make the changes they suggest because they are indeed spot-on.

Laura Clipson said...

This is great advice, thanks :)

Yolanda Renee said...

Are you going only online or do you have a local writers group you can call on? Each group is different so do your research, or start your own. There's that will find those in your area for you. It might be worth a look, it's how I found my first group. It's hard to find a good critique partner, but I'm sure you will. My third book isn't yet ready, or I'm not ready - one of the two, maybe both! LOL

Yolanda Renee said...

FYI: You can also arrange for the rules of the critique not to include grammar only content. Especially if you're working from a rough draft. Let the line editors do the corrections, and concentrate on the plot. I think most writers prefer that, although, I could be wrong. That's why getting the rules of critiquing out of the way first is important! As someone who suffers from grammar skill lack, the plot and storyline are more important in the first phase than the grammar, as that will change again and again with lots of new ideas and changes that might coming from the partners. My stories go through many drafts!
Good luck!

N. R. Williams said...

Hi Alex
You'e said that before. Glad you've got such partners.

Thanks Laura

Hi Yolanda
Yes, I have a local group but I'm not able to meet in person at this time. I'll check into the web site.

Thank you all for your comments.

Denise Covey said...

Hi Nancy. I also think it's important to get critique partners in your genre. As a romance writer, i haven't really had a romance writer CP, so I get told to change things that don't apply to romance. So I'm now faced with taking my story back the way it was before having too many eyes over it.

But CPs are necessary, but you have to believe enough in your own story so you don't accept everything CPs say.

Great news! I just got an offer from a mentor at RomanceWritersAustralia who likes my story/style and is going to mentor me through to publication. I'm facing a lot of work, but what a joy!! Pretty exciting.

See you for CHANGING FACES. I've got my story done.


Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Nancy - you've got some wise advice here ... and I can quite see that having your 'draft' as right as it can be before it goes anywhere, won't frustrate critique readers who have no basics to note down for correction ..

Good luck and I'm pleased your health is better ... cheers Hilary

N. R. Williams said...

That is good news Denise. I agree, in fantasy description is very important.

Hi Hilary

Nancy said...

Yes, too many writers think they don't need to have their books edited. We can NEVER been completely objective about our own writing, though. Great advice.

N. R. Williams said...

Thanks Raw

Sarah Allen said...

Very interesting post. I was lucky enough to be roommates in college with some fellow english majors who now act as my critique group. It's pretty nice!

Sarah Allen
(From Sarah, With Joy)

N. R. Williams said...

Hi Sarah
That is nice.

Lisa said...

I agree with you. Hire an editor, but do the research first to make sure the one you choose is a good match for you! Thanks for sharing!