SCBWI

Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Winter Great Critique Resources

The Great Critique


How it will work for Writers:

1. Bring a maximum of five double-spaced pages or 1200 words. DO NOT bring more. Use standard manuscript format; see the link below if you are not familiar with that. For picture books, we recommend that you bring no more than 750 words.

Sample-Standard-Manuscript-Format.doc or Sample-Standard-Manuscript-Format.pdf

Sample of Picture Book Format.doc or Sample of Picture Book Format.pdf

2. Choose your published author critiquer. You’ll be in a group with 5 or 6 peers and the published author. Choose only one critiquer–make sure you read their bios in the lavender box to see what genre they are critiquing. You must choose a critiquer when you register.

3.  You’ll need to bring seven copies of your manuscript to the event. If less than that, we’ll let you know after registration closes.

4. We’ll also send you some basic critique group guidelines.

5.  At the event, each of you will have a chance to pass your work around to your group and read it aloud.

6.  Each person in the group will make notes on your manuscirpt as you read. They’ll write down what they like, mark errors they see, indicate where they are confused or what doesn’t work for them.

7.  The professional writer will verbally critique your work. If there’s time, other participants may comment.

8.  You’ll receive your copies with written comments from each one in your group. Take them home and let the ideas simmer.


How it will work for illustrators:

1.  Bring up to 5 of your best portfolio pieces.

2.  You will be in a group of up to 6 peers and a published illustrator. Make sure you choose the illustration critiquer when you register. Read the faculty bios in the lavender box to see who is critiquing illustrations.

3.  Bring 1 color copy of each illustration for the professional. Do not bring originals. These copies will be written on.

4.  Bring black and white copies of each illustration for your peers. If the images are small, you may put more than one per page. We will tell you how many will be in your group after registration closes.

5.  We’ll also send you some basic critique group guidelines.

6.  At the event, each of you will have a chance to pass your work around your group. You can share what medium you used for each image.

7.  Each person in the group will make notes on your illustrations. They’ll write down what they like, mark errors they see, indicate what doesn’t work for them.

8.  The professional illustrator will verbally critique your work. If there’s time, other participants may comment.

9. If you are bringing a picture book dummy, provide one copy of your dummy for the professional and copies of a storyboard for the members of your group.

10. You’ll receive your copies with written comments from each one in your group. Take them home and ponder their suggestions.


Return to the Winter Great Critique main page.