photo © 2006 Crystal | more info (via: Wylio)Today's three tips for Monday centers around critiques. Critiques can be so helpful when we want to take our writing to the next level, when we need an objective set of eyes.
Good critiques are worth their weight in chocolate. But how do we go about finding a good critique?
Here are three possibilities:
1. Pay for one. There are many critique services out there. One caveat. Get referrals. Do your homework. Anyone can hang out a shingle and say they're a critique service, but not everyone has the expertise you're looking for. See if you can submit a sample for critique before you pay to have an entire novel worked on. And be sure exactly what the price will be. Is it by the page or by time?
2. Contests. Search out reputable contests that offer at least two judges for your entry. Some, like the ACFW Genesis contest offer three first round judges. If your manuscript makes it into the second round, you get three more judges. That's a lot of critiques for the price.
3. Critique partners. This one can be tricky. I've been in some really good critique groups and I've been in some...well, not so good ones. The key here is to make sure you all understand what you're looking for in a critique, and that you can trust each other's motives. The last thing you need is a critique partner with a vendetta, or one that knows everything, and can dish it out but can't/won't take it. One great place to find critique partners is through blogs. Form relationships with bloggers who are on this writing journey with you, and when you find one you sync with, explore the idea of trading critiques. Again, be clear on expectations.
I have two great crit partners who are so savvy and don't let me get away with anything. A big shout out to Georgiana Daniels and Katie Ganshert.
Do you have a critique partner/group? Care to give a shout out here?