Today is our monthly Wordsmiths meeting. We will gather at our normal meeting place, express greetings and give hugs, share a smile and a few laughs, and then settle down to the business of critiquing. It would be fun just to sit and fellowship the whole time, but we developed this critique group with one goal in mind: to meet with like-minded Christian writers to support and encourage one another in order to improve our writing skills. We are not here to put down or to offend. We are not here to play the “I know more than you do” game. We are here for each other so we can glean and share ways to make our writing a blessing to others.
With this support plan in the forefront of our thoughts, it is crucial for us to develop ways to be more effective critique members. One way is being punctual. It helps to be on time. Being late constantly is not only disruptive, it infringes on the group’s time, especially if someone is in the middle of reading her manuscript. Of course, this does not apply to emergencies, such as bad traffic, road closures, or bad weather. This is for those who have a problem getting someplace in a timely manner because they didn’t give themselves enough time to get there.
So if you have a tendency of running behind, try getting ready a little earlier. Not only will it end up being less stressful for you as you head to your group, you’ll also be able to hear all the news people share at the beginning moments of the meeting.
-Catherine L. Osornio