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Author In Progress by Writer Unboxed Writer Unboxed, Therese Walsh

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The Art of the Invitation

How Asking the Right Questions Can Shape Your Critique Experience

Annie Neugebauer

During the seven years in which I ran a weekly critique group—as well as the numerous times I’ve traded manuscripts with more than a dozen critique partners—I’ve learned that communication is by far the most important skill writers can hone. Most writers know the importance of clarity and honesty when it comes to giving critique, but what about when it comes to asking for it? Communication must come from both sides to be effective.

It’s a fascinating experience to hand a manuscript to someone, give no guidance, and ask for her feedback, but it’s not usually the best way to get the most useful critique—especially if the critiquer is new ...

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