Monday, August 27, 2012

The Value of Critiques

Good news!  I just won the Spring Lucky Clover Picture Book Contest, hosted by Christie Wright Wild.  As a winner, I receive a free detailed critique by Christie.

Photo by Romelle Guittap
I used to be afraid of critiques.  I didn’t want to know what others think of me and my work.  It took me a while before I got the nerve to join a critique group.  Now, I am the first to snatch up an opportunity for a critique.   Joining a critique group and sharing my work with fellow writers is one of the most important things I’ve done for my career as a writer.  Here’s why:

The Value of Critiques
Constructive feedback- A great critique will provide insights to your story’s sentence structure, characterization, plot development, voice, and many other story elements that may be lacking.

Reaction- You get a feel from your critiquer whether your story is interesting, boring, or mediocre.  You'd want to know this so you can work on making your story more exciting and marketable.

Improvement- By learning your stories strengths and weaknesses, it will help you become a better writer.

Teachable Moment- Receiving feedback will help you to be more analytical of your own work.

Information- A critiquer will often share with you resources to help you improve your craft.  You’ll be surprised by the wealth of information you’ll gain from a single critique.

Questions- A critique may give you a new perspective to your story with questions that surface.  Many times this can help move your story forward or take an alternate turn. 

Unique Experience- A critique will bring to the table a different set of experience from the critiquer, offering tips or techniques to improving your work.

Eyes- A second pair of eyes can help you identify mistakes or flaws you may have overlooked.

Are you ready for a critique?  Enter your story for a chance to win Christie’s Summer Picture Book Contest and you, too, could win a free critique. But hurry. The deadline for the Summer contest is September 30, 2012. 

Here is another contest for a chance to get your manuscript edited by Deborah Halverson at   This one ends tomorrow, August 28, 2012.


Having doubts about joining a critique group?  Read this.

Want to get a professional critique?  Here’s a short list of resources:

~Happy Writing!


  1. Nicely done on the post. Congratulations on your win! You are right on reaction. I sheepishly admit to missing that the first few rounds. I read the crit and adjusted for the line edits. Only recently did I have realize how much nuance I was missing in the crit. I started going back and reading the old crits much better prepared to understand them.

    1. Thanks, Lauri. There are a lot if sugar coating in critique groups so, yes, it's tough to get an obvious reaction. With time,you learn to see it.

  2. Congratulations Romelle!

    I liked your acrostic. I hope you learn a great deal from Christie's feedback!

    Best wishes,


    1. Thanks, Cathy. Yes, I am looking forward to her feedback.

    2. Oops. Running-girl is me. Replied with wrong account. :o)

  3. Greetings!

    I'm hopping over from GUTGAA and reading all the meet & greet questions. Nice to meet you! You have a lovely blog...good luck with the contest!

    Donna L Martin



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