It’s amazing what you can learn from a group of your peers when you take the time to discuss your knowledge, beliefs, and practices. I find this to be true in both my business life and writing life. While I am a writer through and through, I must maintain a day job in order to make a living.
While all of my groups are important to me, there’s one that challenges me at every turn. My critique group has helped me grow as a writer more than any other group or class I’ve ever had. We meet once a month. We send up to 20 pages each and meet two weeks later to discuss our thoughts.
The trick to getting the most out of any type of group is to be open to the wisdom and instincts of my peers. It’s difficult to take friendly criticism sometimes and even more difficult to accept harsh feedback. I don’t always agree with the suggestions presented, but I consider them all carefully. I’m never so arrogant as to dismiss another writer’s honest feedback without proper deliberation. That’s the beauty of a group such as mine – the other writers offer their input, but I’m under no obligation to accept those suggestions.
We all have egos, but if we put them aside, we may just allow some greatness to flourish within.
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