Critiquing is about teaching and learning. Each member of the critique group must be both a teacher and a student. When you offer suggestions on someone’s work, you’re learning how to diagnose and solve problems in your own work.
A successful critique group requires positive, helpful attitudes and a willingness to help yourself through giving time and energy to help others. Critiquing should empower members with a sense of collective and individual progress.
Critiquing should never, ever be about showing off how much you know or intentionally, maliciously making someone feel bad.
- How to Critique Fiction by Victory Crayne (with a checklist to use on your own work and others)
- How to Critique and Be Critiqued by Rick Walton
- How to Cope with Critiquing by Rich Hamper
- The Diplomatic Critiquer by Andrew Burt
Extremely useful articles
- Why tough love is crucial for writers (an outstanding article from Writers Digest)
- It’s Not What You Say, But How You Say It by Andrew Burt
- Examples of how tiny wording changes in critiques make all the difference by Andrew Burt
- For a good laugh, try, SAGP – How To Critique a Story
- The harsh realities from one critiquer’s perspective: I will not read your manuscript
Updated April 30, 2019
Header photo: Ithaca, NY courtesy of the talented Paul Joran