Tag Archives: Critique Circle

Where Can You Find Me?

All of you who are subscribers of my blog can find me in your newsfeed or in email notifications. However, you can also find me in many other places. And I don’t just mean social media.

So, where can you find me? First, let’s look at the social media sites.

I’m very active in two places, though I do update in several social media sites. First is Twitter. I have more than 3,000 followers there, and I find it a quick way to talk to people. I check it several times a day, so if you ever want to talk to me there, that’s a good place. So, please follow me on Twitter! Second is Facebook. I have a Facebook page for this blog, and I update there whenever I update this blog, but it’s also a good place to get in touch with me. I only have 61 people following me there, but I’d love to have more. If you haven’t done so, please like my Facebook page.

I also update regularly on a couple others. First is Google Plus. There, I have 67 followers, so it’s not a lot. But if you’re on there, please add me to your circles. And then there’s Pinterest. All of my posts go up there in different categories. I have 30 followers, though they’re mostly friends and family. But you’re very welcome to follow me there!

Outside of social media, there are several websites where I’m active. First is YouTube. I have a channel there, and I really think you should subscribe. I have 42 subscribers at the moment, and I have a large number of videos coming soon. So, please go over and subscribe.

I’m also on Goodreads, and I’m always updating my reading there. I have a lot of books, so you can see what I like and what I want to read. Once I’ve published a book, I’ll be using it a lot more. So, go on over and become a friend.

And finally, I’m regularly at Critique Circle, where I participate in the forums and put works in progress up for critiquing. I also critique stories. I have a free plan, so I can add friends, however, I can add you as a favourite. So, come on over and add me as a favourite author, then send me a message. I’ll add you back.

I’m looking forward to seeing you on many of those websites. Are you members of them? Which ones? If you want others to follow you, go ahead and leave links to your profiles in the comments below.

Authors Answer 58 – Author Online Hangouts

In the past, long before the internet, it was difficult to interact with authors. They could be contacted by mail, and maybe you could see them at an event, but it was not easy to seek them out otherwise. These days, the internet has provided both authors and readers a way to communicate easily. Some authors are very involved with the public, others are not. So, where can you find us online?

320px-Modern-ftn-pen-cursiveQuestion 58 – What are some online forums or websites you use to have discussions with other authors?

D. T. Nova

Honestly, the most interaction I have with other authors is probably actually in the comment sections for authors’ blogs.

Aside from that, I spend some time on Goodreads’s forums.

Gregory S. Close

Although it’s as much with readers as authors, I find the r/fantasy community of Reddit the best outlet for all things fantasy.  Good discussion.  Honest (mostly polite) disagreement.  Great interactions.  Otherwise, I interact with a few of my author friends and acquaintances on Facebook or by email.

Paul B. Spence

I don’t.

Caren Rich

I use Critique Circle- that a good place to get basic critiques of a story. I am also a member of several FaceBook author groups. The most useful ones are Clean Indie Authors and Indie Authors. You have to be careful with Facebook groups some of them are just out to promote what they write and aren’t good for troubleshooting. I’m also a member of Sisters in Crime, a mystery writers group. I highly recommend them. You have to pay to be a member but it is worth it. They offer classes every month that well worth the money.

Allen Tiffany

CritiqueCircle is where I spend 97% of my time online ref my writing. In addition to cycling stories through, I’m active on the boards there and enjoy the discussions. Other than that, there are a few blogs I’ll post to – this being one of them.

H. Anthe Davis

I’m kind of reclusive, alas — I know I should reach out more, but I’d rather stay in my little writing-cave, ignoring the world.  That said, I hang out a bit on the Fantasy Faction forums, though not frequently; I tend to go months between actual posts.

Eric Wood

As of right now the only site I use to converse with other authors is WordPress where I blog.

Elizabeth Rhodes

Year-round I use CritiqueCircle.  Even though I only frequent a few of the threads there are enough familiar faces to make me feel comfortable opening up.  Around November I go to National Novel Writing Month’s site, but I don’t know people there as well.  For a while I used to go to the writing forums on Gaia Online, and it was a good place to talk about writing once you found where the regulars stayed.  But it was difficult for me to keep up with three places at once and I haven’t been as active there.

S. R. Carrillo

Honestly? The blog and, sometimes, YouTube. I need to find some, I suppose. I didn’t know that was a thing.

Jean Davis

The website I use most to connect with other writers is Critique Circle.

Tracey Lynn Tobin

The biggest one for me is the NaNoWriMo website/forums. There are tons of awesome people on there. You can talk to people from one side of the planet to the other, or you can hunt down people who live right down the road from you pretty damn easily. Plus there are tons of resources (there’s an entire forum dedicated just to helping each other answer weird questions that you need for plot reasons), and lots of fun stuff to keep you busy when you need a few moments to procrastinate. Not to mention, in recent years lots of big companies have gotten into supporting NaNoWriMo, so you’ll find all kinds of software developers offering trials of their writing programs, companies offering big discounts on things like editing and cover design, and lots and lots of writers sharing info on who is accepting submissions right now or which website is having a big contest at the moment. It’s got a little bit of everything, and all of it is helpful. 🙂

Jay Dee Archer

You’ll find me online in several places, though I haven’t always been very active in some of them. Of course, you’ll find me on WordPress, including this blog and a few others I frequent. Outside of blogging, I’m regularly on Critique Circle, though I could be more active there. Once I get back to writing and posting Journey to Ariadne, I’ll be active there again. I’m also around on Goodreads sometimes. I’ve been meaning to take advantage of Reddit’s fantasy and science fiction groups. And I’m also on Youtube.

How about you?

If you’re an author, where do you spend time online talking with other authors and readers? If you’re not an author, where do you like to talk to authors?

My Future Writing Process

I’ve been thinking about how to go about writing my future books, and in particular, the 9 part series of short stories I intend to start writing in the second half of 2015.  That is if I can finish the Journey to Ariadne web serial by summer.

As these books are all quite short, they shouldn’t take nearly as long as a novel to write.  However, is it is a long overall story, I want to keep continuity errors to a minimum.  I will not publish the first book until I’ve finished writing the ninth.  Each book will likely be fewer than fifty pages each, though that could change. Altogether, it would be an average-length novel.  So, here is the basic outline for the process:

  • Write each part.
  • Edit for continuity errors, grammar, spelling, etc.
  • Get some alpha readers to read each part and give feedback.
  • Edit again.
  • This part is tricky.  There are limits to how long a story can be on Critique Circle, but I’ll go ahead and try breaking each part down, if they are too long.  I’ll submit them to CC for critiques, as they tend to be quite good at this.
  • Edit again!
  • Beta readers.  Hopefully it’ll be more polished at this time, and I’ll have many of the problems out of the story, better dialogue, better narrative, etc.
  • Edit again.
  • Publish?

Editing is going to be the difficult thing.  I’d like it to be edited professionally, of course.  That is going to be in the publish stage.  This will require further research.

Does anyone have any suggestions regarding the process or do you have your own way of doing it?  Let me know in the comments.

The Advantages of Critique Groups

In my writing, I find critique groups to be invaluable resources.  They are very useful for several reasons, but they are also not a replacement for editors or beta readers. I use Critique Circle usually, but I’m interested in trying out Scribophile, as well.

Critique Circle has been wonderful for me so far.  I recently used it to critique part of Journey to Ariadne, and will be using it for the next part soon.  The critiques vary from short and marginally useful to very detailed and constructive.  I’ve found that it helps me to gauge how readers see my writing, and it’s streamlined my narrative and dialogue.  I’ve learned quite a bit from it.  The way it works is that you can submit a work for 3 points to be critiqued.  Over a week, other users can critique your writing.  But you need to critique other people’s writing to be able to post more.  You can gain 1 or 2 points, depending on if the work is more or less than 3000 words.  There’s an active forum for discussions, as well as several useful tools.

Scribophile seems very promising.  I’ve signed up, but have yet to use it.  It’s similar to Critique Circle in that you post your works for points and critique others’ works to receive points, or karma.  But what I like about Scribophile is the Academy.  It has several useful articles on writing that should help any writer improve how they write. Of course, it also has forums and other useful tools.  They say you are guaranteed at least 3 useful critiques, but most likely far more than that.  I’ll have to try it out with my next part.

Critiques are a great way to check how others perceive your writing.  They’re not for fixing grammatical or spelling errors, but they’re for helping you hone your style, flow, characterization, and more.  Got a problem with too much passive?  It’ll be caught.  Not using semicolons correctly?  That will be caught, too.  There’s so much that they can do to help.  You also become part of a community.  And within that community, you can start to get some followers, people who will stick with your story until the end, if you’re writing a novel.  The objective isn’t to encourage the writer by saying it’s wonderful or engaging, but to point out mistakes, find difficult to understand passages, and help improve delivery.

To make the most out of critique groups, you have to be active.  Not only do you need to post stories, but you need to read.  There’s a give and take in this kind of community.  Returning critiques is encouraged.  The more you critique, the more critiques you will receive.  Not only do you learn new techniques from the critiques, but you also learn better writing by critiquing others.

There’s one concern that some people may have: Is my writing safe?  These two workshop websites I’ve recommended require people to register to be able to view stories.  Copyright is protected, and remains solely the writer’s.  You can even keep your writing private and only viewable by a select few who you trust.  It’s up to you how public it is, though it’ll never be truly public.

I will probably continue to use these sites for all of Journey to Ariadne.  After two rounds of critiques, my third draft will be posted on my official website.
Comments are always welcome!