You’ve heard it before. In order to progress in your writing, you must have critique partners. Every good writer needs someone (or a few someones) who can look at their work objectively and give constructive feedback. What advice givers aren’t telling you, are the amazing things that come from having a great CP. Things you never knew you needed until you have them:
- After reading all six versions of my first chapter, you’re ready to read number seven.
- You know I can’t resist a challenge. Because of that, you expect more from me than I expect from myself.
- When discussing writerly things, you actually know what I’m talking about. Synopsis, submissions, agents, genre, category, word count, contests. #amwriting #amediting #amquerying.
- You’re not afraid to tell me: Paragraph one of chapter six was awesome but paragraph two needs some help. Get back to work.
- The query letter–How many versions have we exchanged?
- You’re my cheerleader. No matter how many rejections, how down I may be on myself, I can count on you to lift me up and get me back in the game.
- You never ask when my book will be published. You actually understand the long process called traditional publishing.
- You fantasize with me about a writer’s retreat on the Oregon coast–watching the ocean, making progress on our novels, and maybe even talking to each other.
- You allow me to be YOUR cheerleader and biggest fan.
- And best of all, you’ve become my friend. Someone I know will be there for me throughout this crazy journey.
Finding the elusive CP is harder than you think. Not that finding someone to tear your work apart is difficult. Finding the person who can do it in a way that lifts you up instead of tossing you in the dirt is akin to meeting the love of your life. They just don’t come around every day. So when you find them, cherish them.
Are you still hunting for the right one? There are several places to look. I met mine through one of the many writer’s groups found on Facebook. Following some of the writing hashtags on Twitter allows you to get to know others working on the same types of projects. Also, local writer’s groups are a way to meet people in person.
In the process of finding a great CP, it’s important to learn what you can give to the partnership. Along with always working to improve my writing, I strive to become a better support person for those that give so much to me. The best way to do that is to hear what you love about your CP. What made this one stand out from the rest? What things do you appreciate about them?