How To Find A Critique Group: You Need More Than A Critique Partner
Critique groups are invaluable for you as a writer! Finding a good critique is like finding a treasure. I have been a part of several critique groups through the years, one of them has been going strong for several years now. I have seen how my work has improved from their feedback, I know how to revise my own work, and I have seen my peers through the publishing process and how fulfilling it is. I am eternally grateful for my critique group!
Picking the right critique is important. Many writers think it is enough to get their friends, family, or colleagues to review their drafts. You don't want just anyone revising your manuscript. You want someone that is familiar with your genre, that understands the querying and publishing process, and that can give developmental feedback on your book and not just line edits.
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How To Find A Critique Group
There are several places where you can find a critique group. Here are the best places to find a group that's right for you:
From my experience, organizations and associations are the best places to find intentional and serious critique groups. I am a member of the Society Of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators and they have critique groups at the regional level and regional Facebook pages where you can connect with other writers who may have ongoing critique groups. Other organizations like The Writers Center offer affinity groups or critique groups that focus on specific genres. Try to find a writers organization or association where you can connect with a critique group or other writers in your genre.
Conferences are another way to find critique groups. I have been part of a critique group for several years and we first met at a children's book writers conference during one of the picture book breakout sessions. We enjoyed the conversation and feedback so much that we have kept our group going even through the pandemic! Conferences allow you to meet writers in person and learn about each other's writing styles, interests, and compatibility.
There are online writing platforms that connect writers by providing services such as critique groups, workshops, or revisions. One such platform is 12x12 for children's books. Back in 2015 and 2016 I was part of an online platform called Ladies Who Critique which has since disbanded. Here is an article that lists many online platforms to check out for critique partners.
Facebook also has writing communities, groups, and pages you can join. For instance, KidLit 411 or KidLit Drink Nights have been a place where I found writers that I befriended and received mentoring from. I know many of these writers connect to form critique groups as well.
Finding a critique group can be hard, especially for a writer who may not be comfortable sharing their work just yet. But critique groups are such an essential resource for writers!
As always, I wish you the best in your writing endeavors! Was this helpful? If you want more articles and resources like these, join my email list to receive my free Self-Publishing From Start To Finish Guide.