1. JosephMarch
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    JosephMarch Active Member

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    Library Book Club as critics?

    Discussion in 'The Art of Critique' started by JosephMarch, Jul 28, 2014.

    So I have recently been hired as an editor for my local library's e-newsletter. I have learned that they have three book clubs with about 15 members in each.

    Now my wheels are spinning about approaching them to possibly read a bit of my novel and give me critique. It would be anonymous since I will be using a pen name for this novel.

    This is my first novel; it isn't finished or even typed. But it exists in many scrawled-in notebooks and I really want to share it.

    Has anyone here tried something like this?
     
  2. EllBeEss
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    EllBeEss Contributing Member

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    I'd suggest worrying about finishing it first and then editing all the major issues with it. There's not much point getting a draft critiqued until you've done your best to make sure the characters are well developed and the plot holes are filled.
     
  3. Okon
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    Okon Contributing Member Contributor

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    It kind of seems like you're looking for praise more than critique, with the "I really want to share it" line. However, I'll assume that's not the case; it would be pretty unfair to judge motive by a single sentence.

    'Bookclubbers' have enough reading to do as it is, in my opinion. I'm sure you have local critique bands. If not, there are some websites here and there that are entirely critique-based communities :agreed:.

    You'd also want to type it first, because 'many scrawled in notebooks' is a rough draft. All rough drafts are bad and should only be read by the person who's writing the second and third drafts, in my opinion. If it's great now, don't let people see it until you make it awesome. After they've told you what's wrong with the awesome version, you can give them the spectacular final draft :pop:.
     
  4. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    Book clubs aren't the same as critique groups (although there may be some overlap in membership). I am a member of a writing group and critique group, as well as of a book club. There are a couple of folks in my book club who I might potentially approach as beta readers, but even then, I'd be hesitant. My writer's group is where I'd really go for feedback and critique.

    A lot of book club members don't really want to thoroughly analyze what they're reading. They really just want to read an entertaining story or interesting biography or something and kind of talk about what struck them as most interesting or shocking. If they're bored by a section of the book, they might just stop reading it altogether, without doing any kind of analysis as to why they found it boring.
     

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