Critique Session

If you are joining us for the first time, please email me directly at [masked] I can email you the critique guidelines and handouts for our upcoming critique.

What to bring:

1. Copies of the FIRST chapter of your Novel, or if you're writing a picture book, bring the whole book that you want critiqued. The general rule is that you must bring copies for every member who has signed up for the session. This way, you get the most of the critique. If, however, you are not able to do so, bring 9 copies at the least.

2. A voice/tape recorder if you wish to record the critiques.

3. A notebook/pad and pen to record your critique notes with.

Please come on time or earlier so you can have more time for a critique.

Also, please inform us if something comes up and you're not able to attend the session, so we can give your slot to another person on the wait list.

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  • Lee

    This was the first time I actually left one of the meetings in a state of depression. I was under the impression that positive feedback was the foundation for these critiques, but it seems I was pegged from the beginning for several misspelled words, confusing voice, unoriginal ideas, and a weak structure from a crappy first chapter of a novel that I will never finish. I'm glad I recorded this critique on audio. It has validated for me that creative pursuits have no real value. They take time, money, and heart energy - the results of which only end up in the waste bin of a lazy agent anyway. I think I'd rather focus on what brings me joy. Good luck.

    November 4, 2012

    • Angie F.

      I could not believe I was reading this, Lee. You have a unique voice. I love "Flexible Fred" and "I married a robot". I look forward to seeing them on the shelves. I've been told "You show all signs of an amateur". After licking my wounds, I accepted that I AM an amateur and these critique groups are a necessity. They're not to discourage, but to help. I would hate for Shel Silverstein to get a hold of my book and say "Did anyone talk to this chick first?" We are getting ready for greatness and believe in perfecting our craft. David Seidler, 73, won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay for The Kings Speech. In his acceptance speech he said he was a late bloomer. That hit me. It won't happen today, but someday, and it won't happen at all if I stop. Like a garden, we have to groom our craft, and deal with the manure in order to reap the benefits later! You've said at each meeting that you were happy to have found CBW. Please don't let this one time change your thoughts.

      November 5, 2012

    • Lee

      I guess with so many misspelled words I just felt really embarrassed (stupid). When my work was compared to the work other well-known authors, I felt like I had nothing fresh or original to offer. I know this isn't personal and that everyone only meant the best. I value good feedback. I guess I was just hoping to find some inspiration/confirmation­ to keep working on this piece - but all of the initial comments were extremely critical and my insecurities got the best of me. The thought of making changes has never concerned me. I want to improve as much as anyone else. Its just the thought of making changes to a project with over 50,000 words - and finding all those words - somehow terrifies me. I do think Nutshell is right and a break is probably a good thing. I have a lot of other things going in my life too, so its not just the critique.

      November 5, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Again very fantastice feedback that will improve my novel and is sending me off in yet a slightly new direction. I need to learn how to use my recorder.

    November 4, 2012

  • Glenn Jason H.

    I appreciate the feedback. the best part was meeting all of you. Writing is such a solitary exercise, it's nice to meet others in the same boat.

    November 4, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Exceptional experience. I felt the group was well rounded, talented, and brought a lot of style and expertise to the table. Just the brand of encouragement I've been needing to reassure me I'm on the right path. Thanks for an outstanding afternoon. And please post another Meetup soon. I need a writer's fix.

    November 4, 2012

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