Friday, September 2, 2011

Writers Critique Group

I was so nervous and excited the first time I attended a Writer's Critique Group. I didn't know anyone. It was pouring rain when I parked my car at the bottom of the hill. I stared at the big iron gates, joggled my umbrella into position and almost dropped my briefcase. Some driveway! It looked more like a road and it wound up through the oak trees, curved to the left and disappeared. As I rounded the last curve, a big white mansion loomed before me. Was this my destiny? The place that would make or break me as a writer?

To make a long story short——I "auditioned" my story and was accepted with open arms. I do think this group would have accepted me with open arms even if they didn't like my story. That's just how they are. I've been in the group for about 10 years now. Writer's have come and gone, but a large core group remains. They have become wonderful friends.

One of our members is singer/songwriter Mary Rice Hopkins, and every so often, when she is not on tour, or on TV or running around in 10 directions, she invites us over. Last Friday was one of those special times. And here are some pictures.

For those of you with young children or grandkids, check out Mary's show every Saturday morning on TBN. It's called "Puppets with a Heart". They've just filmed some brand new episodes.

Saturday Mornings
8:30 a.m. PST
9:30 a.m. MT
10:30 a.m. CT
11:30 a.m. EST

Kids learn invaluable life-lessons, and I'll tell you--it's helpful for adults too! Mary has covered a lot of sensitive issues that kids deal with.

Back to the Writers Critique Group. After Mary showed us her latest tune, we got down to business and critiqued the conclusion of Joyce's book, which is due at the publisher in 7 days! She has written a book for parents with autistic children, giving them hands-on tools and methods to guide, teach, love, and help their child blossom. We critiqued a story by Susan that she is submitting to Chicken Soup for their new upcoming book "Finding My Faith". And we found ourselves relaxing over Linda's manuscript for her "Tea" book. We learned how to calm our busy minds, and take some time to relax, and to enjoy the presence of our Creator.

I had to leave early, so I don't know what happened after that. I'm still trying to find out!


Susan Skommesa said...

What a delightful post Sharon. I completely agree with you, that this is an awesome group, both for the sharpening of our skills as writers and for the love that abounds.

I must confess that most Saturday mornings I watch Mary's show and I have no kids. Shhh. our secret. :)

Susan Skommesa

Dawn said...

What that that would be! What a beautiful place to meet.

Is this where you met Pat Stockett? She has a new missionary book out.

I finally got the family reunion post done - 6 weeks later!