On one of the loops I'm on, a new member asked about forming a crit group.
Boy, do I have advice!
Writing, by it's very nature, is personal. It's something that comes from the heart. It's an art that not everyone can do.
But it can be so personal that we sometimes need an impartial eye to point out flaws. This is where a good CP is worth her weight in gold.
But a good Cp doesn't just come along. Trust me, I know. I have been through a lot!
Have I been through a lot because I'm difficult? Possibly.
But it's also because I've been on a quest for the perfect group, dragging my buddy Kristi along, for a long time. And I think I've finally found it in a group of women who make up this blog and also a group called CritiqueMe.
We have never met face to face, and it is unlikely that we ever will. Maybe, if Iwin the lottery and take us all to Paris for a week, but now I'm dreaming.
So, you ask, what makes this crit group work when others haven't.
For me, it's respect.
We don't have to love what the others write, and to be frank, sometimes I don't.
But we respect the other authors' voices. Not try to change it to suit what we see it should be.
We do point out flaws. If we didn't do that, there would be no point.
I don't want to be part of what I call a "seal group". What that means to me is a group who claps and whoops it up for anything presented.
Respect and a common goal to see everyone publish is what has made this group thrive when others flop.
So, if you're looking for a crit group, take your time and look for someone who respects your work...and whose you respect in turn.