Choosing the Perfect Critique Partner

Choosing the Perfect Critique Partner

While friends and relatives are usually very willing to help with critiquing and being your beta readers, that doesn’t mean they are going to give you the best, honest and technical feedback you need, want or deserve.

Someone with who you have no existing friendship with is more likely to give the real feedback you want. There are lots and lots of women on ready and willing to be that person!!

So how do you choose from the crowd? Here are some hints to make the search for a perfect CP a piece of cake!


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1. Your critique partner should be able to appreciate and understand the genre/ category that you write in. 

Has she read widely in this genre? Perhaps she writes this genre herself? These are great signs for someone who “gets” your work and understands the field.

2. A great critique partner should be giving you the feedback you asked for, not what they feel like pointing out.

3. A great critique partner should have the same work style as you.

If you prefer deadlines and submitting once a week but she prefers a more laidback approach, you probably aren’t a great match.

4. Critique experience is more useful than writing experience.

Keep in mind that while someone may have written and published 15 novels, that doesn’t make them good at critique. Critique is a skill that takes some time to hone. Don’t judge your critique partner’s worth on their writing credentials alone.

5. A great critique partner is polite, yet frank.

If you want someone to stroke your ego and gloss over your flaws, then Aunt Peggy is a good bet. A truly helpful CP will sweetly point out the areas that need improvement and expansion, helping to catapult the standard of your work to a whole new (& fabulous) level.

6. You should enjoy their writing.

If you don’t enjoy her writing, you are less likely to value her critique, passing it off as “her style”. Respecting a partner’s work can equate respect for her opinions, not to mention making your side of the critiquing more pleasurable.


 What do you look for in a critique partner? Add your thoughts in the comments below!

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