I’ve only been on Critique Circle for a few days, so perhaps this assessment is premature. I really love it because there are many intelligent and talented authors on the site. One of the unique things about this site is that you can’t view any critiques for a story until you give one. This prevents previous reviewers from influencing subsequent ones. Believe it or not, that can make a huge difference. Also, when I hear the same comment more than once, I know that it’s likely a problem because these reviewers are reading my story without a bias. I think that was part of the problem on the other literary critique site. . . In the beginning several different people commented on my stories. But then this guy came in on every one of my stories and told me I was doing everything wrong. I think people were scared to comment after him.
At Critique Circle you start as a newbie. Your story spends one week in the story queue or gets pulled off after 6 reviews (review max only has a limit in the Newbie queue), whichever comes first. My flash fiction piece about the mother donating her son’s heart got 7 critiques in less than 24 hours XD A huge part of that is because of the credit system. You need credits to post a story, and the only way to get them is through critiquing other stories. You get 1 credit for any story between 300-3000 words. My story was around 500 words, so that’s part of the reason so many people critiqued it. If you post something longer, like 5,000 words, you won’t get as many reviews. That doesn’t mean the story is bad. It’s just easier to critique a shorter one.
As far as the critique goes, it was very good. None of them were negative. They were honest, but not demeaning or mean. Nobody told me I was a horrible writer or that I should read a book on how to write fiction. I wouldn’t go there if you are self-conscious though because it can be hard to take. I mean they rip your story apart, but that’s why you’re there XD If I didn’t want to publish my stories I think I wouldn’t do it, but since I do, I’m grateful for the help. I had a problem with fanfiction that if I was honest people would explode. I’d say 10% of the reviews I gave had someone exploding on me, even though I tried my best to give sugar-coated concrit, so I eventually stopped reviewing. I certainly wasn’t trying to hurt anyone. Many people ask for concrit, but they don’t really want it. On Critique Circle they do XD Everyone is nice and most people thank you for it. I thanked all seven people that reviewed my story as well. I think constructive criticism is not about what you say but about how you say it.
I mentioned this before, but I’ll mention it again. This site is password protected meaning you can’t see the stories unless you have a user ID and password. So it prevents the internet from caching your story. It’s not considered the same thing as online publishing, at least that was my understanding. Again, here’s the link: http://www.critiquecircle.com/
In other news, I think I have convinced two of my friends to write original fiction with me XD They were both previously fanfiction writers, but want to try something new 🙂
Does anyone else have a favorite critique site? I tried two, and this is my favorite so far!