Saturday, December 8, 2012

Looking To Start an Online Crit Group

Okay, so I got this idea from the YA Novel Writing Class I took with Nova Ren Summa earlier this year.  Everyone wrote and posted 15 pages/week. It's slightly less than 4000 words, but at 15 pages a week, you can totally finish a book in six months or less. Probably less, because if you stick to 15 pages/week you get on a roll and lots of weeks you'll write more.

We posted these pages for feedback from our 2 crit partners and Nova. But the class is over and I find myself a) needing somewhere to post a required # of pages/week and b) in need of feedback. I'd like to start an online crit structured the same way. This is my hope/goal: If you're interested send a five page writing sample to bethfred08(at) I'll pick one person to help me review 5 page samples from one to two more people. We'll work together to determine a due date for pages and a due date for critiques. We can either share these documents via google, or I'm willing to create a private forum depending on what the group is most comfortable with.

What I'm looking for:
--people who write YA/NA/Clean Romance
--strong writers who have not yet reached their full potential

Critique Style
This group will use a very specific critique style--gentle but honest. Nova never told students something was wrong. She would say she wasn't sure she believed something or she wasn't sure she understood something. The very next line would be "would it be better if ____." The "If" usually was better or at least gave us something to think about to come up w/ something. This critique style pointed out problems without crushing souls, and supplied the writer with options. We will use this critique style.


  1. Good luck, Beth. I've been in a critique group for years, and I love it. It's fun to help each other and cheer on our successes. I've seen critique partners get agents and book deals. It's so great to have a core group you can count on.

  2. Hi Beth,

    I'd love to do this. I have a critique group of two others that meets once a month. I have my work critiqued every second month. I find that with novels, this isn't enough. Also, neither woman writes or reads YA.

    I've stayed away from critique groups that post online because if your work is up on the internet, publishers consider it "previously published." However, if only a small group has access to the work, that's fine.

    There are sites with great suggestions on how to critique constructively that could be used to help people who haven't done it before.


    Bonnie Ferrante

  3. Good luck. I'm in an online critique group that uses google docs to critique our pages and it is really easy.

  4. Finding a crit group requires a lot of time and experimentation. There are lots of online groups, but you have to give each a chance before you know if they're the right fit and that can be annoying. Personally, I've found the best crit groups on, Critters and some reasonable feedback from Absolute Write and YALItChat. You might also find like-minded people on She Writes. I wish you good luck! :-)

  5. Sounds like you have a good idea going, but at the moment, I already have a crit group for my cleaner stuff and taking on reading more people's work is a big responsibility for me, so I think for now, I'll say no.

    But if you do want a straight but nice crit, feel free to contact me. :-)