In Which I Ask for Help

I have a budding career as a writer. I have contest wins, I have books on submission, I have six completed novels and two more in advanced stages of pupation. I have a good (line) editor. I even have steady income and a small pool of readers.

I don’t have a critique group. Or even a critique partner.

Not one. I’ve never been in a critique group. I’ve never had a critique partner. The closest I’ve come is a steady first reader, which I had for a while in the inimitable Jill Peterson, but one, she’s pretty busy these days and two, she was always too close to the author, being that she worked for me (different line of work).

I find myself cranking out content at a murderous pace right now, more than 50,000 words a month, or a little less than a novel every 30 days. I’ve done that for a year almost, and the last couple of months have been easier than ever, so I’m taking that as a sign that this is going to be a thing. I intend it to be. I’m confident that the material I’m writing is good.

help-wanted-sign-e1376585657552What I don’t know is if it’s publishable-good. I can’t determine this on my own. I’m far too close to the material. I don’t even do a good job of editing it.

I’ve gone as far as I can go toward a real career in writing as I can without someone(s) to help make those judgments. I’m therefore asking for help.

What I need is a couple of people to read my stuff. It shouldn’t be a terribly onerous job, since we’re talking about–at most–a couple of hundred pages a month. But it does need to be fairly timely, as in, I send a manuscript, I need to get feedback within a couple of weeks. I have short timelines for getting these things whipped into shape and getting them out in the market, one way or another.

And the reader needs to be

  • really good at this kind of thing, willing to be brutal when necessary, and able to provide encouragement when not
  • well-read in a wide range of genres, sci-fi, fantasy, romance, literary, mystery, shorts and novels and everything in between
  • familiar with and able to analyze story structure as well as language

I realize I have very little to offer in return. I am willing (eager, even) to read material as a critique partner for someone else, and I think I can promise to give back everything I’m asking for, so if you are looking for someone who’s had success to read your stuff and give you signposts to getting better, I think I can do that.

Anyone interested? Email is chris [at] iamchrisjones [dot] com.

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One Response to In Which I Ask for Help

  1. Tiana Smith says:

    Good luck! I don’t have time to critique that much on a regular basis, since I already have some critique partners also. You should ask people in the NaNo cabin. And if you tweet it, I’ll help spread it!
    Tiana Smith recently posted..I Have an Agent!My Profile

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