Singles tennis is an individual sport. But when tennis players join a team and share a goal—say a league win—it can lift their individual games. Team members practice together, assess strategies, analyze strengths, point out weaknesses, share pointers, root when a point’s won, console when a game’s lost.
Critique partners and writing groups can serve as an author’s team with improved craft and publication as common objectives. To help one another reach these goals, we pinpoint what works in a partner’s plot and what doesn’t. Is a scene funny—or not? Does a heroine stray out of character? Do the dialogue and internal thoughts of our hero ring true, or is he talking/thinking like a woman? (One reason I LOVE having a male writer as part of my critique family.)
Do I make every change my colleagues suggest? No. Yet I consider them all. Even when I don’t take a suggested revision, I may revise to skirt around a word or sentence that made the reader stumble or a scene that slowed pace or seemed “over the top.”
Our Upstate SC Chapter of SinC meets in
, and our guest speakers include a wide range of “Law and Order” professionals. We’ve heard from medical examiners, a U.S. Marshall, district attorneys, police officers, arson investigators, crime reporters, FBI agents, private investigators...and the list goes on. These folks not only seem happy to answer our questions at our meetings, they often hand out business cards and invite us to call with any questions we think of after they leave. Greenville, SC
Most folks who write fiction can attest to the fact that the road to publication—whether it’s for book one, two or ten—is full of twists, turns and more than a few potholes. I find it’s quite comforting to have good company along for the ride.