Hello, CSU! I hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine’s Day. My gift to myself was a new english riding saddle, and I’m pretty stoked about it. Who needs chocolate when you can have new tack, right?
Today I want to introduce you to an amazing community of writers that I recently discovered. It’s called Scribophile. You can post your work and have it critiqued by a whole bunch of other writers, including those that write in your genre and in other genres. You can post novels, short stories, and poetry. But there’s a catch! Posting your own work for the community to critique costs karma points. In order to earn karma points you have to critique work by other writers. You get more karma points for critiquing work in the spotlight, and the amount of karma points you receive depends on how thorough your critique is. The author can give you extra karma points if they find your critique helpful, encouraging, enlightening, and/or thorough. This system ensures that you do your part to help the community, and in return others will help you out as well.
I’ve posted two chapters of a new novel I’m working on, and so far the feedback has been wonderful. I’ve spiced up my characterization, added some tid-bits of information to the world I’m building, and added a few needed dialogue tags. My readers have discovered things that I never would have had I been editing on my own.
I’ve also critiqued quite a few works so far, and I’ve found that critiquing work by others helps me with my own craft. Like that old Phil Collins song says, “In learning you will teach, and in teaching you will learn”.
Writing is oftentimes a lonely and isolated pursuit, so it helps tremendously to find a community of people that share your same passion for the written word. If you’re a writer looking for feedback on your work, or a reader who would like to help out with feedback and revision notes, I highly recommend you join Scribophile. You won’t regret it!
Natalie can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on twitter @n_juteau