WIFYR season is upon us and there are 150 or so hopeful writers who are getting giddy about it. We’ve been waiting all year and now it is on our doorstep.
Critique is the main focus of the morning workshops. It is a critical process that every writer and every story needs. We authors get so close, too close, to our work we can’t see it objectively, the way others not as vested can. New eyes can provide a fresh look and clarity where we are unable. The story may be clear in our heads, but we need unbiased evaluations when it is not coherent in the mind of others.
Finding the ideal writer’s group can help you get the most out of a critique. I’ve been in a few, some that have worked and some that have not. Success may depend on organization of the group - convenient meeting times, driving distance, etc. I had a great writer’s group, but the drive from Salt Lake to Ogden was long and tedious and our meeting times were not ideal for me. The key ingredient in the success of a group comes down to the people. My new group is ideal. The logistics are fine, but mostly we’re a good fit, we mesh well together.
Critiquing at WIFYR is unique in that you are thrown in with a hodgepodge of people, most of whom you’ve never met before. Some are strong writers, others are still finding their way. Of course, we seek to improve our own stories, but through the appraisal of others, we enrich our own understanding. Our purpose is altruistic, we’re there to help each other out. Yet, we become better writers ourselves as we pull each other along. You’re only with your WIFYR new best friends for a week, but an intensive five days it is.
I’ve read their incredible stories. I can’t wait to meet them.
(This article also posted at http://utahchildrenswriters.blogspot.com)