Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Importance of Critique Partners

I have often mentioned my critique partners on this website. However, I do not believe I have talked about the extent to which CPs can help a writer.

I have been fortunate to have a group of great CPs. I am not someone who believes you must have critique partners who write in your own genre--although I will admit I always try to have at least one CP who writes in my genre.

CPs can do so much more than just read over your manuscript. They can provide a supportive network as well as a shoulder to cry on when you are having difficulties writing. Just this weekend (since I could not email anyone with the electricity down), I talked to my CPs in South Carolina and in Texas.

Linda, who lives in South Carolina, did yeoman’s labor for me on Bad Boy. She read and re-read chapters on short notice without complaint. When we talked today, she gave me a writing tip she had picked up from RWA:
To help you locate passive language in your manuscript, run a search for instances of the word “by.” By doing so you will uncover sentences with passive phrasing. For instance--

“She was bit by the dog”

Could be better said--

“The dog bit her”
I also phoned my CP, Red, who lives here in Texas although several hundred miles from me. She and I talked for an hour this weekend, brainstorming ideas for our next novels. We are both interested in writing a paranormal, and it was fun to bounce ideas off each other.

Meanwhile, a couple of my writing buddies and I exchange weekly goals every Sunday night--to keep us honest and on track with our writing careers.

I could not write if I did not have my band of trusted writing pals at my side. I treasure each and every one of them.

1 comment:

Heather B. Moore said...

I love/hate, mostly LOVE my critique group. It's amazing what they find when I think it's all just so perfect.