Too Many Cooks in the Kitchen

As you all know I had 15 little darlings pages to ship off to SCBWI for a manuscript critique. (You remember “Holy Freak Out" in a can?)  First my lovely critique partner Diana picked it clean and made me look like a rock star.  Then after I completely dissected it, I shipped it off to two other trusty critique buddies.  Then finally, I let the hubby look at it.  Would you have guessed that every single one of them discovered a misspelling that the others did not?  (solider should have been soldier, lose should have been loose)  Words that were close enough they fooled the eye. 

Grammatical errors and misspellings are a must change.  Multiple observations/suggestions from your critique buddies of your piece need to be heavily considered, most likely changed.  Then lastly, minor suggestions or changes are at your discretion for what fits best in your vision for the novel.

I like it when people are happy.  More so if I can do something to make them happy.  When ends up biting me in the butt because I found myself trying to accommodate majority of the suggestions made by my critique partners.

WRONG!  Luckily for me I was under a time crunch and quickly got a clue.  After I sent out my little baby manuscript, I realized I can not please everyone, nor should I try.  Besides, a little controversy could be good as well, right Lindsey Lohan?

To add to the critique Su Chefs that I already have in my kitchen, I decided yesterday to go to a critique group.  Everybody has one and I thought it was something I needed.  

Um, no.

On the “YAY!” side, everyone had a lot of positive things to say about writing and the piece itself.  The few suggestions or concerns they had my lovely Su Chefs already pointed out.  Though I am happy about what was said and/or suggested, I became overwhelmed because there were TOO MANY COOKS IN THE KITCHEN! 

A “good” critique partner will point out possible problems.  It has been for me the most invaluable tool to advancing my writing.  I suggest it to everyone.  Weather you find a local group or buddies on the net, you will be amazed at much it will help. 

BUT…

There is always a but, don’t get too many critiques at once or you will go bonkers analyzing all the comments.  Sometimes you just need to remember the old rule of less is more.

Do you have a critique partner?  Is it working for you?