1. ariella
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    ariella Contributing Member

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    Private Crit Groups

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by ariella, Dec 19, 2006.

    Ok everyone I was just wondering what you all think of starting up private crit groups in this forum.

    For those of you who don't know what they are here are a few basics and I hope it helps you understand what a privat crit group is.

    Well a crit group is a group of several writers ranging from 2 to maybe ten.
    Once a week each member of the group will enter a chapter and in return will crit two chapters of other members work.
    So in a group of eight or so it would be fair to assume each week every member would get at least a chapter critted.
    then after that the members are able to edit there work and resubmit it if they wish for fine tuning.
    The rules would generally suggest that all members must be activly criting and submitting. People who wouldn't follow those rules should be rejected from the group so not to slow down the flow.
    They should also crit properly not with comments such as "this is good" or "great work." the chapter should be critted in a edit type method.


    I am after everyone's opinion on this.
    If we get enough responses to this and support I am aiming to have it up and running by the end of January.
     
  2. Robert
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    Robert Banned

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    You talk of chapters - is it your intentions that this is primarily for those writing novels rather than shorts? I guess different groups could focus on different types of story.
     
  3. The Freshmaker
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    The Freshmaker <insert obscure pop culture reference> Contributor

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    The idea aside, I totally did a double-take on the word "Crit."

    I'm gonna go watch some porn now.
     
  4. ariella
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    ariella Contributing Member

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    It is not primarily just for novel writer's it is intended for all forms of writing. Dending on the interest it will be devided into categories I guess. Sorry about that Robert.
     
  5. Robert
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    Robert Banned

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    Don't apologise, it's a good suggestion. Thanks for posting.
     
  6. ariella
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    ariella Contributing Member

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    You are welcome Robert and thankyou. :):)
     
  7. Raven
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    Raven Banned

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    Well this venture has my full support. I think its a very good idea especially since the forum is now growing at a very rapid rate. And could help the forum's writers out much more on both Critique and receiving critique, not to mention the help it will give a writer with his/her own work.



    ~Raven.
     
  8. Ferret
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    Ferret Contributing Member

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    I agree...good idea...
     
  9. ariella
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    ariella Contributing Member

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    thanks for replying both of you and Raven thanks for the support, it's always appreciated.
     
  10. SeaBreeze
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    SeaBreeze Banned

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    love the idea, very good for those that are unsure about what they are doing. :)
     
  11. zerobytes
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    Love the idea - let me know if you set something up and count me in.

    zb
     
  12. ariella
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    ariella Contributing Member

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    Will do zb. thakns for the reply.
     
  13. poetryliberates
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    poetryliberates Banned

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    awesome idea ari, if it eventuates, count me in

    Nikki
     
  14. newguy
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    I'm game I will try to join and be a proper member
     
  15. ariella
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    ariella Contributing Member

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    Thanks Poetry, will keep you updated on how it goes.

    Newguy, it's great to hear that you are interested.
     
  16. Kat
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    Kat Member

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    I'd be interested also. I think this is a good idea!
     
  17. Torpeh
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    Torpeh Member

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    Just echoing what's gone before - wonderful idea; I'm fully in support.
     
  18. ariella
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    ariella Contributing Member

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    Kat thanks for the interest and thanks to Toreph as well.

    If we get the right amount of interest I will organise the Private Crit Groups to start off in the New Year.

    With the ok from the administrator of course
     
  19. ariella
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    ariella Contributing Member

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    This thread has been restarted in the suggestions and feedback section.

    Thanks everyone.
     
  20. Raven
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    Raven Banned

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    You know me Ariella I'm always glad to help. And its great to see the support and interest your idea has recieved. I may be offline for a short peroid due to the reasons you know of.

    But I'll definatly be back on before the year ends.

    ;)



    ~Raven
     
  21. Hadrien
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    Hadrien New Member

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    Nice idea, but the toughest part will be to organize these groupes of people. Will it be specialized groups for example ? Poetry, Sci-fi etc... I think that the best part about this "crit group" idea is that you really have to keep both writing your own short/novel and criticizing someone else's work. I'm pretty sure that you must learn a whole lot about your own writing style and techniques when you have to crit someone else's work too...
     
  22. The Reaper
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    I'll be glad to help out.
     
  23. ariella
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    ariella Contributing Member

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    Thankyou both for taking the time to read a comment. Yes it will be categorised, but not too much, variety is somtimes good for us all. :)
     
  24. TWErvin2
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    Ariella,

    I've participated in several online crit groups over the years (and still am), including moderating some, and I'd like to throw my two cents in.

    Your idea of two crits required for each submission to be critted is an excellent idea to implement. A suggestion/possible solution to solve one of the questions about short stories vs. novels, etc, would be to put a word limit...ie. no more than 5000 words submitted for crit per week.

    Some groups have put in a rule to limit the number of times a write may resubmit a section after revision. The theory being, once a critter has read a piece several times, either the writer has incorporated their suggestions or they have not and there is little to say. In addition, the piece is no longer fresh in the critter's mind and they suffer from the same "nearsigtedness" to the project as the writer may.

    It may also be useful not be required that a member submit material each week, nor crit each week, but a minimum standard of crits (at least 1 crit every three weeks and one submission of at least 500 words each month) required. The vast majority of writers have other jobs or attend school/college and and family and as such, their schedules (and thus free time to be online and writing) are not fixed.

    The size of the crit groups is very important, too few as well as too many members and it is hard of function. Mentioned earlier, ten members is pretty large. Two members really isn't a crit group. In my limited experience, four to seven is generally a good number to shoot for. The area/genre of the writers is also a question to address at the time of forming.

    Also, some notion or guidelines as to what constitutes an "acceptable" crit is important from the onset of the group. Will, "Good Job, you're really crusing along" cut it? I've seen it where each statement or summation by a critter has to address/support their opinion (answer "how" or "why"). Other times I've seen where a minimum # of words is required for a crit. The point being, that a writer is seeking thoughtful input, and it is very doubtful their work is perfect. And if it is a very good/polished piece submitted, the critter should comment on what is working with the piece and explaining why (a balance of positive comments and constructive criticism). Sometimes, simply the moderator of the crit group is the referee, and contacts a member if their crits are insufficient to meet the standard.

    Once a crit group is established, some mechanism should be in place for removal of a member (ie. minimum standards for active participation, inappropriate behavior--flaming or degrading other members for example). Also a mechanism for admitting new members. Is there a trial period, is a majority vote needed by current/active members, will a writing sample be needed and voted on by current/active members? Is there a process for a leave of absence...family or medical illness (ie. a member gives birth to a child...a member has a book accepted for publication and needs to spend much of their available writing time working with the editor/revisions)?

    Every online group and every crit group is a little different. I hope my suggestions are helpful.

    I also had an article published a little while back, which has been reprinted a couple of times, on crit groups. It may be helpful to members here considering joining a crit group and the type or group that may work best for them. Here is the link:

    http://www.fictionfactor.com/guests/critlist.html

    Terry
     
  25. ariella
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    ariella Contributing Member

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    Yeah thanks for the input on this topic. It is most definately appreciated Terry.

    Well I am working on all the rules and regulations at the moment, so this has been very informative for me and really helped out.

    Thanks heaps
    Ari:):)
     

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