Sunday, September 11, 2011

100 sites for fiction writers: #51 - Critique Circle

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.

Critique Circle

Nearly all fiction writers like to have someone else look over their work before it is sent to a publisher or self published. This only makes sense. Even if one has a long history of being a professional writer and/or editor, it's easy to gloss over your own mistakes. It's also a good idea to have fresh, new eyes to look over your writing for mistakes. Sometimes we writers are just to close to our own writing, missing obvious errors in plotting and sometimes even errors in spelling and grammar and punctuation.

Some writers are fortunate in that they have a critique group, either online or in real life, or at least they have a few beta readers willing to look over their material.

For everyone else, those unfortunate enough not to have a critique group, there is always Critique Circle.

At Critique Circle, writers can sign up for account, then read and critique the writings of others while also receiving critiques of their own writing. This works on a points, or credits, system. Basically, you receive so many points every time you read someone else's story, then you "spend" points to place your own writing into a pool of stories to be critiqued. Sometimes it can take a couple of weeks for your story to appear in the pool.

All of this allows writers to get feedback on their work, which is something any writer needs, but especially beginners.

Though this is a website mostly concerning writing critiques, there is plenty of other information there for the reading. For instance, there is a Tip of the Day, as well as a Publishing Q&A that answers many beginning writers' questions.

For added fun, there are a handful of Tools here for your use. You can create a Word Meter Builder that allows you to take html text and place it on your own site or blog to show readers how far along you are on a particular project. You can also use the Exercises tool to build your writing skills. There's even a game of Hangman to play. Don't forget to check out the many other offerings at this site.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Pretty good site. Forums aren't large or active, it's mostly pure critique. Operates on a credit system so the give and take is fair. Weaknesses: It can take a long time to get your work critiqued. It goes into a queue and all is posted on one day of the week (Wednesdays?) Often, the next week's queues will be full and you have to either pay extra points to have yours bumped to the upcoming queue (which then bumps someone else out of it, if it's full) or wait for the next week, or the next, or the next. Then it's up for a full week for critiques. So, it can move slowly. Also, over time I reported a couple of people for very nasty comments or replies and they would not get involved. I do not believe in allowing nasty behavior, I believe the job of management is to address it. Quality goes way down when people can anonymously behave however they please with no consequences. Overall, I think it is a good site. I have gotten some great crits there.