How to Handle Criticism

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By Donna L.H. Smith I hope to bring a fresh perspective to a sensitive subject. As writers, we’re regularly critiqued, edited, and otherwise told to change our text. It can get downright discouraging if we don’t have the proper attitude toward it. If we have rejection issues (like I do), it can feel personal, when it’s really not. It’s about …

Rules of Writing Encourage or Discourage

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By Linda Robinson After I joined a large critique group a few years ago, I was terrified to press Send for my first 2,000-word submission. How intimidating to put my work out there, knowing it was open for target practice. I wasn’t worried about grammar and punctuation, but about the story itself. Nail-biting nervous, I waited for the first critique …

The Rhino in the Writer: Thick Skin & the Value of a Critique Group

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By Hannah Conway Join a critique group. Yes, that’s some of the soundest advice given to me regarding the wonderful world of writing. Yet, the next part of that advice? Well, it’s more on the strange side. Develop rhino skin. Join a critique group, and develop rhino skin. Let that sink in. I’ll wait while your nose finishes up that …

That’s What Friends Are For

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by Sarah Sundin When I started writing, I was alone. I’d never met another novelist, and I had no idea where to start. The first and best advice I received was to join a writers group and attend conferences. Made sense. I needed to learn my craft. I needed to meet editors and agents so I could sell my book. …

Publishing vs. Encouraging

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By Ane Mulligan According to a song lyric by Linda Rondeau: Home, home in the industry Where the writers and publishers play Where seldom is heard An encouraging word And the skies are so cloudy all day Thanks, Linda for letting me borrow the lyric. Yes, I’ve experienced discouragement in my writing journey. Maybe it was a rejection, or comments …

Are You Being Tossed About by Every Wind?

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By Henry McLaughlin Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Ephesians 4:14 NLT In my small group recently, we were discussing critiques. One member had …

Be a Critter-Getter

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By Linda Robinson If I were forced to choose only one blessing I’ve gleaned from my membership in ACFW, it would be hard. After much thought, I would have to say it occurred when I chose to become a part of Scribes, their critique group, which resulted in an even greater blessing. While submitting chapters and critiquing others’ submissions, a …

Dissecting The Old To Make It New

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by Gail Gaymer Martin By the time novelists sell to a traditional publisher, they’ve donated a large amount of time honing their craft. Rejection points out a weak writing technique: pacing, dialogue, point of view or other flaws. Learning to write a good book is a craft. Many people say someday they’re going to write a book. They sit down, …

Iron Sharpening Iron

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by Tamera Alexander “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17 Deborah Raney and I have been writing critique partners for more than ten years, ever since we met at the first ACFW conference. While not all critique partners become friends, friendship has been a natural outgrowth of our working relationship, and I’m so grateful. Over the …