Friday, June 10, 2011

The benefit of multiple critique partners

Yesterday (today for my friends a few time zones back) was one of those days where my day took a completely different spin from what I expected. But it was necessary to do, so there you are. Anyway, I hate that my posting is getting a bit erratic, so I'm posting now to compensate for the lack yesterday. My regular GPF is going up later today at 2PM(ish) CAT.

I've been thinking about crit partners last night as I went to sleep. A lot of people seem to believe (me included) that the best thing about crits are if they all pick up something for you to correct. 

But then I was struck by something. (Sorry if this is old news.) All of us are wired differently. I'm a stickler for plot and characterization. I've been lucky enough to have  found a CP who's great at Voice. 

Still another one is great at pointing out mediocre word choices and crutch words. 

All of us have different talents. Which is great for me. 

See, the devil is in the details. Those small, subtle errors that you miss won't get past someone with a knack for picking up those types of errors. 

I think that's the beauty of being in the crit group or having more than on CP. It's just that more likely to get the mistakes spotted.  

So, what are your strengths and weaknesses when you write? Are you part of a crit group or crit partner arrangement?  


  1. I wonder which one I'm in! :) My first crit partner is basically magic with everything. My other is good with pointing out technicalities. :)

  2. Such a good point! Multiple critique partners means multiple points of view!

  3. *sigh* I need to find some crit partners. Lol. I'm definitely going to be on the lookout for a few once I finish my WIP.

    But you're totally right. Having more than one crit partner is great for getting different opinions on your work.

    Great post :D

  4. 'The devil is in the details'. This is very true. Sorting out those tiny little problems is when I find that writing becomes work, rather than a fun hobby.

  5. I started a small crit circle several years ago and I deliberately invited people with different strengths. Best. Team Ever.

    I also have other crit partners outside the circle that I'll tap after my first CPs have looked at the manuscript and I've polished.

    My number one rule is not to let someone who's already read the manuscript read it again. Firstly, because once is enough to take someone's time. And secondly because virgin readers are better at catching things.

  6. Hehehe Devin I'm sure you can hazard a guess. :-P

    So true, Trisha.

    Kristina, they're definitely worth the time it takes to find them. ^_^ I hope you find your dream team.

    Christine it can be difficult. I always have to look twice as hard for them because they're part of the scenery, so to speak.

    Maria that's a great way to do it. Mine sort of fell that way. ^_^ I also have crit partners outside of the group just for balance. I have one CP who's nailing me on voice and little errors as I write, because I keep missing them. After this first rounds of revisions and edits are done, I'm sending the book out to my other CPs. I'm considering it to send it to a few of them first, editing again and sending it out to the rest. I'm thinking that that will be the best way to clean up the WiP.

  7. I choose crit partners who write similar to me but can still spot the uglies in my manuscript

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  9. Misha, Sorry about posting twice. I had a mistake.

    I have a great group of critique partners! One is great on word choices. Two are great on grammar and punctuation. One has the ability to narrow my focus. One offers suggestions that I would never have thought of. The writing process is definitely NOT for the Lone Ranger (Ohhh...that has the making of a blog post, I think).

    Thanks for your post on this. It makes me appreciate my partners even more!

    The Write Soil

  10. CAT is an amazing time zone, just sayin'. =)

    Anyway, I feel pretty confident with word choice, dialogue, and plotting, as well as the little grammar details. My weaknesses are definitely characterization, emotion, and description--those elements have to stay at the forefront of my mind to get into the writing. I've managed to do them well when I think of them, but I tend to...not think of them. *oops* I'm definitely going to be looking for some crit partners with strengths where my weaknesses are when I finally finish up my WIP. 5k to go! =D

  11. Hi Misha,
    I absolutely LOVE your blog! What a great resource for writers!!! I've left you a little award on my blog...not much, but I hope you like it! I'm looking forward to more posts and being able to read your books in the future!

  12. Oops! Here's the linky doo to my blog! (Sorry!)

  13. Em, that's a good strategy. That way, they take your style into account. :-)

    Hehehe Dawn I look forward to reading your take on Crit Partners.

    L. Carroll thanks so much for the award!


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