September 10th, 2014

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Writing Excuses 9.37: Training a Critique Group

Writing Excuses 9.37: Training a Critique Group

From http://www.writingexcuses.com/2014/09/07/writing-excuses-9-37-training-a-critique-group/

Key Points: Be polite. When you respond to feedback, all you say is thank you. Train the writing group by modeling the behavior. Understand that we are critiquing words on paper, not the beautiful story in your head. Start by agreeing to rules. Respect the piece -- hard, but not harsh. Don't fix it! Feedback, not rewriting. Symptoms -- reactions -- are good. Diagnosis is maybe. But prescription, leave that to the expert. Prescription can lead the author to fix the wrong thing. Beware of misleading discovery writers, especially with prescription and "What if you did this?" Have discovery writers submit finished work to avoid this. Watch for personality clashes. Trial periods and professional attitude can help avoid this. Agreeing on syntax can smooth out group interactions.
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[Brandon] All right. So our writing prompt... Are we really doing the bubble stuff?
[Howard] Sure. That's fine. There is a magic system in which the audio that you put in the deck of your car will give your car magical powers.
[Dan] And different genres will protect you from different natural disasters.
[Laughter]
[Howard] Oh, man.
[Dan] I guess it's tornado season. Time to put in the romances.
[Laughter]
[Kathleen] Different kinds of monsters. Like vampires, zombies.
[Brandon] You listen to the 60s music, you fly?
[Laughter]
[Brandon] This has been Writing Excuses, you're out of excuses, now go write.
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