critique etiquette…

because of a very generous Christmas gift from an amazing critique partner, I received a critique from Writer’s Ink’s Judy Enderle on my Middle Grade Adventure/SciFi STOLEN MIND.

It was an excellent reminder of what makes a good critique. Just the way I was taught, if that is the right word, by a fantastic children’s writer and former children’s lit professor at Framingham State.   The written critique began with what was good about the story so far. The opening hook was there. The main character was interesting and sympathetic. The fantasy elements were woven in. Most important to my story [because you know I like mysteries] there was an element of uncertainty as to who my main character could trust so it was Yipee! a page turner.

The other part I appreciated about Judy’s approach was that she questioned me as to what was going on in the story. She didn’t tell me what I needed to say but asked questions and made suggestions. Like: would Aaron be able to see the man at the front door? Or. Shorten the sentence structure for tense scenes.

She ended the critique noting that the pitch had a great hook. So. I’m pumped. In the actual manuscript, she marked where commas should be [a major failing on my part, I think, because I usually neglect breathing when talking in my head] and, gave suggestions for tightening up language.

Thank you, Debbie for your amazing gift. Thank you, Judy, for a sterling critique.

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