Friday, June 17, 2011

Am I A Gray Blob?

As for the title...  Don't answer that.  I better not be!

For this week’s Fantastic Friday Writers, the topic is Critique Partners.  In a recent interview, the host said, “I’ve heard writers say that participating in critique groups hampers the individual’s creative process; that not only is a lid put on the writer’s inspiration, they come away a cookie-cut shape of the others in the group.”  Then he asked if I belong to a group and what my thoughts on the matter where. 

Well, I suppose if a writer finds a group of authors that are headstrong and set on theirs’ being the only right way to think, that view would be true. 

It’s important to let your muse shine when you create.  Self expression is what keeps us individuals, and in my opinion, brings dreams to life.  How interesting would it be to have everyone appear, sound, think the same?    

It reminds me of (yes, I’m a mom) an episode on The Fairly Odd Parents.  It’s a little cartoon where fairy godparents grant wishes to a little boy named Timmy.  In The Same Game, Timmy is teased for having buck teeth and wanted everyone to look the same so he wouldn't be different.  And he wishes it.  Of course, Wanda and Cosmo make it so.  Everyone in the world turned into a gray blob of a person.  Nobody appeared different.  They were only able to find Timmy and grant his wish to return to normal by finding the gray blob that wore the pink hat—Timmy’s little individual show of expression.

Relating this to critique groups and cookie cutter writers…  If people in your group try to tell you how to think and tell your story, then find another group.  I have wonderful critique partners.  I’ve mentioned them several times in my blogs and all over the internet.  

Check out the other Fantastic Friday Writers’ blogs!


Jeff Beesler said...

Wow, I'm glad to see I'm not the only one who brought a cartoon character to the Fantastic Friday Writers topic this time around! And I agree on the matter of writers needing to stay true to themselves and their work.

J. D. Brown said...

*shakes her pompoms for Charlene* And I am lucky to have you too, Charlene! :)


Anonymous said...

I have been fortunate in my critique groups as well. I've since moved away from the group (as they were all children's writing groups) and now have a couple of readers (one in particular). I would be lost without her. She has a most excellent 'eye'or two (LOL). She makes me a stronger writer in my own voice and I try to do the same for her. We make a good team and have been successful because of it.
Thanks for sharing your good fortune, Charlene.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

My critique partners are awesome and certainly don't force their views on my work. And I don't think you're a grey blob!

Charlene A. Wilson said...

We're fortunate to have great teams to work with. Support is so important. And thanks, Alex. I'd hate to be known as blobbish. :D