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  • Writer's pictureBrooke

Thank you to my critique groups!

Updated: Mar 16, 2019

Welcome to my website. Thanks for stopping by and taking a look!

For my first ever blog, I want to share with you my appreciation for my critique groups. I can say, without a doubt, my debut picture book (which is being released in 2020 by EK Books) wouldn’t have made it to publication without the ongoing feedback—both positive and negative, from my critique groups.

Like the African proverb, ‘It takes a village to raise a child,’ I believe it takes a writing ‘herd’ to develop a book to publication standard. My critique partners are the first people I share my stories with—whether it’s running a new story idea by them, or asking for feedback on plot and characterisation or grammatical line edits. Like every other writer, I’m emotionally invested in my work and despite spending months (often years) planning, writing, revising and proof-reading a story, it’s easy to overlook structural and characterisation problems, and spelling and grammatical mistakes. I believe being willing to accept feedback from critique partners and having the patience and dedication to make numerous revisions is what makes a story shine.

Authors spend a lot of their time working solo, which can make it a lonely occupation, so for me another benefit of being in critique groups is developing a network of writing friends.

If you’re an aspiring author, I urge you to become a member of a critique group. A good starting point is joining The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) or the Julie Hedlund 12 x 12 Picture Book Challenge. I know that alongside completing writing courses, attending conferences and reading books on how to write for children, being an active member of critique groups has certainly contributed to my success of becoming a published author.

Before I sign off, I would like to say a mammoth thank you to my critique groups. My critique partners are motivating and uplifting—it truly is because of their support that I’m on my way to becoming a published author.

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