BWC Critique Group
What it is
Black Writers Collective’s Critique Group is an online writers’ group available to all elite members who need feedback on fiction and nonfiction works-in-progress. It is a reciprocal group, meaning if you submit material for others to critique, you are required to critique their works in return. Being part of this critique group will help you with your own writing and become a stronger writer in the process.
If you would like to have your material critiqued, but do not want to critique others, consult our editors’ directory to hire a freelance professional who offers that service.
How it works
The long critique group meets every other month (to start–may change to monthly depending on group size) to critique three members’ projects per session. Members are not required to submit every time, but are fully expected to critique every time. Materials are submitted within five days after each meeting to be critiqued during the next session. The members to be critiqued may submit up to 20 pages in Word or Rich Text format to the group via the private forum. Each submission is to be reviewed constructively in a format to be provided by the facilitator, which can include comments embedded in the excerpt pages or a critique report in a separate document. All critiques must be sent to the facilitator before the meeting. Critiques are first discussed during the allotted meeting, after which each member of the group will email his/her critique to the author to apply suggestions as necessary.
Meetings are held in real-time via Zoom or other application based on the group’s preference. The group also has a private forum in our community portal which is accessible solely by approved members.
If you have recently presented, you may add your name to the list again. However, others will be allowed to move ahead of you until two critique sessions have passed. If no one else signs up, then you can go again.
If you are next on the list but can’t attend the next session, let us know and we’ll save you for the next one.
In addition to the reciprocal requirement, members must be active on an ongoing basis (no in-and-out participants). Material must be in Word or Rich Text format, formatted in standard industry format with the author’s name, the title, and page number on every page.
What's accepted and what's not
This group accepts fiction and nonfiction. We do not accept extreme urban fiction, erotica, or works that contain excessive foul language. If you write material that would not be accepted in this first group and would like to form another group, simply email us and we will create a signup sheet or survey to gauge interest from other members. If there is enough interest, we’ll get that set up for you. Also, if you are a script writer and interested in a script review group, please be sure to let us know. We have a facilitator prepared to form such a group if there is enough interest.
How to sign up
Elite members will use our sign-up form in the community portal to join the critique group and get on the featured writer list to submit material for a long critique. After you log in, it will appear on the Members dropdown submenu under “Members.”
Meet our Facilitator
Elaine Garcia is not only a professional writer of mainstream fiction, she is a professional editor and proofreader residing in Addison, Texas. She became a published author in 2004 and in 2006 was Interim President of The Writer’s Block, Inc., an organization of Black writers in the Dallas metroplex. This is where Elaine gained her experience critiquing, later launching her own critique group that was active for five years. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing for Entertainment from Full Sail University and presses on as an editor and proofreader, serving other authors and writers. For more information, visit her profile in the Black Editors & Proofreaders directory or her website at BeforeYouPublish.com.