Matt emailed me yesterday asking if we were having a meeting this week. Due to the craziness of the holidays, I think it would be best if we skip December and reconvene in January. In the meantime, I encourage you all to work on whatever you're writing so we'll have plenty to look at in January!
On another note, the group is only paid for through near Christmas and, due to my recent vocational issues, my budget cannot stretch even that far. I propose two solutions and I would like to hear what you all think:
1) We take the group off of Meetup.com and create a free Google Group. The main advantage of Meetup is that anyone who is interested can search for a writer's group and find us. If we move to a Google Group, our primary means of adding new members would be word of mouth.
2) The other option is to remain on Meetup, but I will need people to donate money up front. This can be set up through the Meetup website or PayPal. The costs are $45 for three months. If we can get 9 people to donate $5 each or 5 people to donate $9 each, then we could cover the next three months.
Hello! If you have found this group, you are obviously interested in composing some sort of speculative fiction. Our purpose is to help you improve your writing, provide support, and help you become a published author (if that is your goal).
We meet once a month, typically on a Wednesday or Thursday evening. Our meetings consist primarily of critiques, with occasional short presentations and speakers. Pieces to be critiqued are on a first-come first-serve volunteer basis. Pieces are limited to approximately 5000 words per meeting.
Anyone who is interested in ANY KIND of speculative fiction writing should join: science fiction, fantasy, alternate history, paranormal, horror, supernatural, superhero, utopian, dystopian, post apocalyptic, apocalyptic, and more! We have members who write flash fiction, short stories, screen plays, novellas, and novels.
Please let me know if you have any questions about the group!
HOW IT WORKS
1) A person will volunteer their piece of approximately 5000 words or less to be critiqued for a specific meeting date.
2) I post a .doc and .pdf version of the piece in our Files section (see top nav bar) with the date clearly labeled.
3) All members print out the piece and write all over it - with grammar, spelling, thematic, plot, character, narration, voice, etc comments. Both positive and negative.
4) Everyone will bring their marked-up copy to the meeting. Verbal critiques take place at the meeting and focus on craft rather than grammar. All critiques should be constructive and specific. No "I don't like it" or "you suck" allowed. Something more along the lines of "I really like your fresh voice, especially in this paragraph" or "Mary Jane's character could use a little more developing, I feel like I don't know her."
4a) We go around the table in a round robin circle giving feedback to the author. The author makes notes about the comments and then is free to reply at the end after all the critiques have been given. This allows the work to speak for itself and comments are made only about the work itself and not the author's defense of the work.
5) At the end of that critique (and not before), everyone gives their marked up copy to the author. This will help the person remember your thoughts, provides an opportunity for you to voice an opinion you might not make with 10 people listening, and is especially helpful for grammar issues.
6) In a given night, we might give 4-5 critiques on average.
7) Repeat. Please let me know if you have questions!