cri·tique[kri-teek] Show IPA noun, verb, cri·tiqued,cri·ti·quing.
an article or essay criticizing a literary or other work; detailedevaluation; review.
verb (used with object)
to review or analyze critically.
I was sitting in an elementary school library last week, listening to the lesson prepared by the librarian for a young class. She was asking them what they thought 'critique' meant. I leaned over, interested to hear what the response would be.
Surprising both her and myself, a young girl said it was to be perfectionist about something. Critical of your own work, per se. I was really impressed. The first thing that comes to my mind is to be critical of someone. I guess that says a lot about my mentality...sigh. The above definition comes from an online definition, not Wikipedia.
Most of us belong to a critique group. That group serves as a very large part of our editing and writing process. You may not call it a critique group, it doesn't matter. If they are reviewing your writing and giving suggestions for it to be better, that's what it's all about. Keith talked about a little bit in his blog on Saturday, so you see how our lives are intertwined with the idea.
I belonged to a group for almost four (?) years, and then it disbanded. At first I didn't think it was that big of a deal, but lately I've realized that I need to find another group and get going with it, because I'm too close to my work. I need a fresher perspective, and from someone who is not related to me. ;) So, I'm going to be putting out the word and seeing what I can find out.
It's my understanding that Nichole (our wonderful own published person herself) is going to be teaching at class at LDStorymakers conference about critique groups. You might want to attend (if you don't already have your schedule full) and see what she has to add to the thoughts. Because of course your attending, right? I mean, silly question. Everyone who is anyone is going to be there...unless they tried to register after it already filled up...sigh. (which would be my case...)
Anyway - enjoy the fun filled hours of craziness and rubbing elbows with the talented. Remember you are a great writer in your own right and can still learn much. I'll be looking for a new group.
I might have to sit outside the library and flag people down. "Hey, do you write? Want to be in a critique group?"