I find all these groups helpful and inspiring for different reasons. The benefits of critique partners who write for the genre are probably obvious. These people are well-read and experienced in my favorite field. My SCBWI group, with its talents at all levels of kid lit, help me make sure my work is appropriate for my target age group in addition to their other feedback. But sometimes I want or need to expand my writing beyond writing for children or young adults. Enter a drop-in visit to the library group.
Tonight, I owe this post to a fellow library writer. I was looking for suggestions as to where I could cut parts of a magazine article I'm working on. (800 words over count in a novel? No biggie. In a magazine article? Wince. Grimace. Moan.) Deborah pushed me to think about it in a different way. "Get a highlighter," she suggested, "and highlight all the parts you really want to keep."
Advice I'd heard before? For sure. Advice I needed to hear again, right then? Yes. And behind those words of advice, much needed subtext. The answer is there when you're willing to look at things a different way. Thank you, Deborah!