A Critique Group “Worth Its Salt”

“Although critique is commonly understood as fault finding and negative judgment, it can also involve merit recognition,” states Wikipedia. 

My critique group, Central Arkansas Writers, also known as CAW, meets monthly as a closed group at a public library. At present, we have four members.  Each one travels an hour to the centrally-located meeting place. I drive down from the north, another comes up from the south and the other two come in from the east.  Each writer gives and receives an in-depth review of the works-in-progress. Our recent creations are as new as a little chick that hasn’t scratched yet or a newborn calf too wobbly to stand.



A writer’s feelings about a new piece may be sensitive when feedback indicates room for improvement. But with good-natured enthusiasm, our group works well together, as we have done for years. We take each other’s writing goals to heart.  At present, we are into novel-writing. Three of us have published novels and the other member has a completed novel ready to be published.

Our method is to send a new chapter by email the week prior to the meeting. We critique and bring the copies to the meeting. We then discuss each work explaining our suggestions, page by page, as the author of the piece listens without comment. Our aim is to encourage each other and therefore we add a smiley face or a check plus to show that certain lines and phrases stand out from the red-penciled areas.  As creators of fiction, we need to see the good marks occasionally. 🙂 CAW is definitely worth its salt.

CAW Meeting 2012-1

Rhonda, Freeda, Pat, Dot and Dorothy

Dec 10, 2011 008 -1

Rhonda, Pat, Freeda, Dorothy and Dot

CAW Meeting-Batesville-4Mar06 021 - 1

Central Arkansas Writers held one meeting at the historical Bevin’s-Dorr house in Batesville. Charter members– Dot, Nina who is now deceased, Freeda and Pat.

CALL of the CADRON - Copy


A Journey of Choice

A Journey of Choice

An Ordinary Day

An Ordinary Day



12 comments on “A Critique Group “Worth Its Salt”

  1. Dot says:

    Thanks Freeda for this blog.You hit it on the mark. We have to trust each other a lot to be able to critique the way we do.’Couldn’t do it without you.’


    • We’ve bonded well, I think. I’m always grateful. You ladies help the writing job to be less lonely. Within our group, I feel “there’s someone out there” and I’m not just writing to a blank piece of paper. LOL


  2. dotlatjohn says:

    I still love and miss my friends in CAW. My time with you helped me grow as a writer. All you said about the way the group functions is right on. Very helpful and nurturing!


    • We still miss you, DJ. Your skill as writer/editor was much appreciated in our group. I’m glad you are still writing. I’m loving your blog, and hope someday to see Thomas’ story in a book.


  3. I Wilkerson says:

    Wow this sounds like a great group Freeda. How nice to get feedback, be held accountable for producing a new chapter and get some camaraderie all at the same time.


  4. ginger kemp pruett says:

    What a nice looking group of women. I think what you ladies do would be a good thing. There are times when opinions of others may help and times when it wasn’t what you may have wanted to hear, but gives something to think about. 🙂


  5. Time with friends who have the same interest…nothing better…and accomplishment too…sounds great!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. patlaster says:

    Good job! Thanks.


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