General Critique Group Guidelines

General HSW Critique Group Guidelines

The purpose/goal of a critique group is to get feedback from fellow writers to help improve your writing craft and/or manuscript. Analyzing the work of other writers will also help you develop better editing skills; seeing their mistakes will better help you see yours.
NO bullying, harassing or belittling will be tolerated – by anyone.

Responsibility of the person giving the critique…

1. Start off with something positive, no matter how small.
2. Be professional and focus on the writing – not the writer. Better yet, focus on the story and not just the words.
3. Do not try to make someone else’s story into something you’d write.
4. Do not rewrite the story – unless it’s yours.
5. Give suggestions and not just criticisms; make notes on the manuscript, whether a hard copy or through tracking software. Be sure to return the pages to the author.
6. Be humble. Be respectful. Chances are you’re not the end-all, be-all expert on writing. Remember that.

Responsibility of the person receiving the critique…

1. Provide ample number of hard copies – if your group is a “homework” one.
2. Make sure your submission is free of as many typos/grammar errors as possible. Think of your critique group as a dry-run for an editor/agent, even if your pages are in the “early draft” stage.
3. Do not take the criticism personally. Remember the goal is to improve your writing and/or manuscript.
4. Ask questions to get clarification on comments, but do not argue, justify or defend.
5. Take time to consider all the comments, decide which apply to your work, then move forward with your revisions.
6. Be proud. Giving your pages to others to critique takes guts. Own that.

Contact Linda Enos, linda.r.enos@gmail.com, with questions/concerns or if you’d like to join a group.