SCBWI

Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Critiques

Curious about critiques? Want to know what they’re all about? Meet Shelly Nosbisch, the critique group coordinator for SCBWI Nebraska. If you want to connect with other local writers to create critique partnerships, Shelly can help.

 

Critique Group? What’s that?

A critique group is a group of writers that focus on helping each other grow in their writing skills. It’s a bit different from other writing groups that focus strictly on improving craft. Although some critique groups do exercises to work on different aspects of writing (dialogue, setting, or plot, for example), critique groups also critique each other’s work in an effort to help improve it.

Sound scary? It can be. But getting feedback on your work strengthens your writing skills and builds confidence. Many of the more successful members of SCBWI are critique group veterans. When considering starting or joining a group, please commit to at least one year to give the group a chance to get established. It’s not always easy to share your work with others until you feel comfortable with them.

 

Pick What Works for You

Shelly can help you get started with a group, and groups can take different forms. For example:

Online critique group – may be set up with a Google doc, Google Hangouts, or simply emailing each other submissions. Critiques are provided online. Works well for people with very busy schedules and those who live far from other members of their group.

In-person critique group – may meet biweekly, monthly, or bimonthly depending on the group’s needs. Critiques are given verbally at the meeting (but pages are exchanged beforehand to give people time to read, think, and write comments). Helps with forging new friendships and support.

Informal meet-ups – may need to set up an initial group face-to-face, then could get in touch on an as-needed basis.

 

If you’re interested in forming a critique group, please email Shelly Nosbisch at michele.nosbisch@vcfa.edu with the following information, and she can help you find a group – or get a new one up and running.

 

Name:
City (or nearest city if you live in a rural area):
Type of critique group you are seeking (online, in-person, informal):
Email:

Your writing background:
Why you want to join a critique group:
How often you would like to meet with your group/partner:
Genre(s)/age group for which you write:

 

Please note that this service is only available to members of SCBWI.

 

One more option

Any SCBWI member can attend open Critique Groups in your area. Click here to view our open critique group list. Although those listed are not official SCBWI critique groups, many writers find these connections helpful.