Prepublishing, Tips & Tricks

Critique Groups Away From FB

Social media has a lot of perks, but it also comes with a downside. It’s a rabbit hole of information and various interests, and it’s easy to get caught up in various things.

To help reduce that itch to explore when you’re supposed to be working on your WIPs, here are some recommended critique groups.

Scribophile

Scribophile works off karma points. People critique others works to earn karma points—critiques are evaluated on length, how well they are received by others, and if a crit does an outstanding job, the writer can award them more points. When someone earns enough points, they “spend” them to post a piece. Each piece that is posted is in que for a spotlight, and the piece remains in the spotlight until it’s received a minimum number of critiques. When you first start an account, you’re given almost enough points to post a piece for critique.

Scribophile has some built-in social media necessities like favorites list, groups, and messaging. This can lead to a wonderful networking experience and friendships.

Scribophile has two tiers: A free and a paid. For $9 a month, you get unlimited posting at a time, if you have the karma points to spend. On free, you’re limited to two active critiques being posted. This could be a bad thing for those who are working on deadlines.

There are two downsides to Scribophile. The first is the length limits per piece put forward. If you write long-winded chapters, this could cause you to have to break them into smaller chunks. The other downside is sometimes your work only gets the minimum number of crits or one of those crits might not be worth the time you spent reading it. Some reviewers are point farming, so they might not be the best reviewers for your genre/style, and that can really be a bummer. That’s why it’s important to make connections, become someone’s favorite, and find groups to help make the experience better.

For a more in-depth view on Scribophile, check out these posts:

Critique Circle

Critique Circle tops the charts when long time writers are asked ‘what crit group do you recommend.’ Established in the early 2000s, it’s been around and functions similar to Scribophile. Writers review others works to earn points to put pieces up for evaluation.

The group has made the top of well-known sites like Reedsy, KBoards, and Reddit. And similar to Scribophile, occasionally you get reviewers who are point farming or a beta who doesn’t fully understand what they are supposed to do.

Both sites function roughly the same, and it’s worth trying both out to find your own tribe. If you like the layout between one or the other better, perhaps move your own tribe to the site(s) to take advantage of the set up and to make sure everyone gets a fair shot at being read and critiqued.

Now, I haven’t been everywhere, but while seeing what other sites were out there, I stumbled upon this post by Reedsy. https://blog.reedsy.com/critique-circle/ They list their top 50 best online crit groups, and some are standalone sites like the two I listed and they include a lot of social groups found on sites like FB.

Seeking outside advice can be a challenging moment. You’re worried about all the ways it can go wrong. Look toward the positive instead. What wonderful things can happen when you let others share your joy? How much stronger can your message be when refined by someone who isn’t already in your head?

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This post is edited by ProWritingAid.

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