Posts Tagged ‘ novel ’

Writing Critique Groups

  I hear both positive and negative sides to writing groups/critique groups. Some writers find them very useful while others…not so much. When I began writing seriously I found myself most often chained to a table at my local coffee shop writing away on my laptop and moving only when one side of my butt fell asleep. Needless to say (sidenote: I think this is one of the funniest phrases as it is always followed by that thing that doesn’t need to be said…), I began craving human interaction if only to talk to someone outside of the characters in my head. I knew that alone if I were to have a question about character development or plot twists or get writer’s block or any number of potholes on my writing journey, I would be stuck spinning my wheels.

So I turned to the internet for help. Through a site called meetup.com (Yahoo Groups is similar), I found a writing critique group that met around my area. When the day finally arrived when I was to meet my new best friends for the first time, I found myself both nervous and excited. Through the Barnes & Noble doors lay my future. Through the guidance and tutelage of these learned souls I would excel to new heights in my writing path and propel my novel ever closer to the publishing world! So say we all…

Not exactly.

While everyone who came and went in that initial writing group was very nice and eager to help others groom their writing skills, I left after a year and haven’t joined another group since. Two good things came out of that group: 1. I met my friend and author Alissa Grosso who has helped to guide me on my own writing path while following hers and 2. I have a better idea of what I want from a writing group.

I realized I need: people who attend consistently (so many people were in and out of that other writing group there were no real connections made on my end), people seeking to better their writing and eventually seek to get published (while I appreciate that it takes a long time to write let alone get published, it would be nice to talk to people who are going through the same agent seeking, query writing troubles as me), people writing in the same genre (I write YA/MG and it would be nice to find others who understand where you’re coming from and where you might be going), and people I trust to share my work with (this goes back to the consistent thing as I don’t want to give portions of my baby novel to someone who I only see once every few months).

With those criteria in mind I signed up to attend a group that actually meets at the library I work at. Yay! I have high hopes for this one, so wish me luck. First meeting is tomorrow night. 😀

Happy writing!

It’s Monday, What Are You Reading?

It’s Monday, What Are You Reading? is sponsored by Sheila over at Book Journey, come join the fun!

I am SO, SO excited! After blood, sweat and tears, I finished the third draft of my novel! Hooray! I’ve sent out my query letters and am working on a synopsis and feel amazing just having a finished product after two years – TWO YEARS! Trying to keep a balance between optimism and realism as I try to land an agent. But, I’ve resolved to keep busy on other projects I’ve been putting off so that I could finish my novel so that I don’t go crazy while waiting for replies. I’ll be sure to keep you posted! 🙂

ALSO, WriteOnCon is finally here! Well, tomorrow is the official start date, and perfect timing as I’ll have the time to participate as much as I want! If you haven’t heard of it, it’s an online conference hosted by some fabulous writers/bloggers and is designed to help book lovers, writers, and aspiring writers to learn, give and get feedback, and dialogue about writing. It’s FREE so there’s no reason you shouldn’t sign up. For more info and the schedule, visit the WriteOnCon website or check out Lisa and Laura Write – one of the awesome and talented sponsors of the conference and published authors of LIAR SOCIETY coming out March 2011.

Here’s what I’m reading this week:

The Coolest Race on Earth by John Hanc – This short book, chronicles the history and anecdotes of the Antarctica marathon. Runners are already known for being a little crazy and this book does nothing to help that image. Sold out years in advance at the price of a few thousand dollars, runners from all over the world trek to the southern-most part of the world to participate (and survive) this marathon. While I’m not quite at that point of being crazy, I love reading about people who are! I’m really enjoying the book so far and even if you aren’t a runner, you can appreciate the lengths someone will go to in order to follow their passion.

Ender’s Exile by Orson Scott Card – I’m listening to this on cd after listening to Ender’s Game, a classic I had been meaning to read for a while. While it was a slow start, I like Ender, the military boy genius, that I can’t help but want to find out what his fate is. While giving you any plot lines in this book may spoil the first one, I would recommend actually reading it rather than listening to it. I feel like some of the intricacies of the characters are overshadowed by bad accents and too many readers.

What are you reading this week?