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List of Writing Critique Groups

09-09-04a tm_lv, reading e-mail Recently I did a post on Getting More from Writing Critique Groups. In that post I said that not everyone gets on with every group and that you should keep looking until you find one that works.

So to help with this quest, I have compiled a list of writing critique groups that might be helpful in a search. Some are duplicated which is not a bad thing if you look on duplication as another form of recommendation. Some are unlikely to be relevant because of location but will serve to illuminate options in your quest.

There can be no recommendation of one more than any other, since everyone’s style, genre, needs, ability, personality and desire are all different. The task of actually finding your grail is down to you.

Lists of critique groups on other sites

The Writer Magazine If you add up the groups then they have over 1100 groups listed. This site attempts to subdivide by location and genre but the data is incomplete so you have to trudge through the links. That aside it is a brilliant resource.

Links to Writers’ Workshops Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America’s link list of all things Critique. Good list, well worth a look.

Internet Writing Critique Groups Four groups listed as “Massive”, “Edgy”, “Competitive” and “Small but deadly serious”.

MWA-sponsored critique groups Open to members and non-members of MWA. These small groups demonstrate what might be available in your area, so don’t forget to contact your local library, book shops and community organisations for local information. This is a nice list of about 25 links, the plus point is that each site has an informed comment against the link. (Note; the list starts after the header list of articles about critiquing.)

Children’s & Educational; Resources & Links Completely out of my field with this, so I have listed Liana Mahoney’s informative link page. She lists some brilliant starting points for you to find out where else to ask and look.

Critique groups

Scribophile This site has a free and a paid membership, which is great since you can check it out with the free membership and upgrade if it works for you. It covers diverse genres and also has forum based community pages.

Online Writing Workshop for Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror This is a pay site, you do get the first month free to see if you fit in. I couldn’t see any other way to lurk and judge the site and competency of the reviewers, so they are still waiting for me to sign up. They may have a long wait.

Crit Partner Match Interesting Ning site generated by Kait Nolan. Basically it helps you find a critique buddy, oh, sorry, “Partner”. Importantly a critique partner satisfies a different development need in your novel and would work alongside a critique group. Remember to work with someone who stretches you. Free writer’s community and more than just a critique group. A good place to locate a critique buddy amongst other things. All genres covered.

Critique Circle Another free group with a fee based “Premium and Premium Gold” service. This site also has forum based community pages.

Critters Workshop Free site with a serious reputation. It restricts submissions to Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror from “serious writers”. They are not as bad as they sound but expect to work for your supper.

Critters Critfinder Sub page on the Critter site facilitating finding a local critique group or critique buddy.

Great Writing (UK) Free critique and discussion community.

You Write On Free critique group sponsored by the English Arts Council. An additional benefit of this site is that top work receives additional expert scrutiny and promotion to publishing houses.

SF Novelist Critique group purely for “hard” science fiction. The first six months are free, after which the fees are about half what is generally charged.

Historical Romance Critique Group Quite an active group on a specialised genre. This group is on Yahoo groups which should be giving you the idea to check FaceBook and Google groups as well.

Historical Fiction Writers Critique Group Another very specific critique group on Yahoo. I must admit their “rules” put my back up slightly but then I don’t write historical fiction so it doesn’t matter. They may however be just what you are looking for.

And Finally

Redroom and Authonomy. Both of these are slightly different from a straightforward critique group. However by placing your work with either of them, you are asking for it to be judged, so it would be remiss of me to omit either of them.


Photo; Reading e-mail, tm_lv

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7 comments to List of Writing Critique Groups

  • [...] this page was mentioned by Teresa Frohock (@teresafrohock), Spike Wyatt (@spikethelobster), Andy Shackcloth (@le_shack) and others. [...]

  • Hi Andy, what a great list. I’ve been on OWW since February. I started with the free membership and after my first few chapters were critiqued, I was hooked on the quality of the critiques.

    You don’t have to use your credit card for the “free” period, and when the “free” time limit expires, so does your account. What I liked about it was the fact that there was no obligation on my part. Try it, like or not.

    I like the number of words they allow you to post. I can post my entire chapters on OWW without breaking them into two parts.

    It’s well worth the small fee they charge for membership and very user friendly.

    I did try Critique Circle, but it wasn’t as user friendly to me as OWW was. I’m sure they all take a certain learning curve, but OWW really fit my needs.

    I know people who absolutely love Critique Circle. I’m unfamiliar with some of the other ones, but I’ll be investigating them, too!

    Thanks for such a wonderful post.


  • Hi Teresa, Thanks for the informative comment.

    I think you have realised that I am a bit of a cautious bunny and so signing up before I could check out the site, had me hopping off elsewhere. Obviously I was too quick to leap.

  • I’m the same way: I like to see that I’m getting my money’s worth.

    I checked out both Critters & Critique Circle before settling on OWW. I am going to go around and check out some of the other links you’ve listed, because some of them I haven’t heard of all.

    Again, this is a highly useful list. Thanks for putting it together.


  • This is a great list. How useful do you find these kinds of groups?

    • Gary, I find them very useful but you have to work at getting value from them and approach them with the right attitude. In a previous post I pointed out that even mediocre reviews have valuable lessons if you analyse the reviewer and where they are coming from.

      In answer to a critique I received recently, I thanked a reviewer for making me aware of a fault in my writing that I was previously BLIND to. It would not matter how many pages I had written, as I was blind to that fault I would have continued to reinforce a very bad habit. That one review has confirmed to me the value of critique groups. I will point out though that I have been very selective in approaching reviewers who work in my genre and who speak informative sense.

      This comes for free and builds a firmer foundation before a full work gets torn to shreds by a professional. However by that time the basic lessons will have been learned and my skin will have thickened considerably.

      To my mind a critique group is a tool and you have to learn how to hold and how to sharpen that tool to get the best from it.

  • [...] where to start? Well, Andy Shackcloth has taken all the pain from the experience for you. He has a List of Writing Critique Groups that can’t be [...]