Ode to my critique partners

To my critique partners, on this, the occasion of Friday.

Before I became a writer, I knew how to write. And before I got serious about the craft of novelizing, I subscribed to the notion of the artist in a vacuum, committing her glorious prose to the page and subject only to her own drive for perfection.

Now I know the vision of the solo creator was always a fiction. It was one of the most profound realizations of my writing life, such as it has been thus far. To be fair, I’m pretty sure people tried to tell me that in college, but you know college kids. Think they know everything.

We each started with different strengths as CPs; one of us was great at spotting logistical loopholes, another is the queen of character motivation, and I tend to focus on word choices. We’ve been sharing those strengths around, though, building our toolboxes.

I think now that learning to write is a lifelong process, like learning to be a person. If you stop trying to grow in either sphere, you stop being decent at it.

 

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