SCBWI

Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Great Critique Resources


 

GUIDELINES FOR VIRTUAL GREAT CRITIQUE EVENTS

 

How it will work for Writers, Winter 2021:

1. 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 to see what genre they are critiquing. You must choose a critiquer when you register.

 

2. Send a maximum of five double-spaced pages or 1200 words. DO NOT send more. Use standard manuscript format; see the link below if you are not familiar with that. For picture books, please send the entire manuscript, up to 1200 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


3.
 Email your manuscript to coordinator Lisa Gerlits no later than Friday, January 22nd. Be sure to include your last name in the file name (e.g. Smith-FantasticStory.doc or .docx)

 

4. A few days before the event, you will receive an email with all of the submissions from your group (up to six, including yours). You do not need to read them ahead of time, but you may want to look them over for ease of commenting. We’ll also send you some basic critique group guidelines.

 

5.  Instructions on how to access the Zoom conferencing tool will be sent to you in an email a week before the event. We recommend a high speed internet connection and a quiet space or headphones. We’ll meet as a large group for faculty introductions, and then break off into smaller groups for critiques.

 

6.  During the critique session, each participant will read aloud from their work, while others take notes and follow along with the text on their screen (faculty members will screen share the manuscript).

 

7.  The professional writer will verbally critique your work. If there’s time, other participants may comment. Take notes, as you will not receive written comments. Let the ideas simmer.

 



 

How it will work for Illustrators, Winter 2021:

1.  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 to see who is critiquing illustrations.

 

2.  Send up to 5 of your best portfolio pieces or the first 5 images from a dummy. Each image should be no larger than 500k. Please include your last name in each file name (e.g. Jones-print1.jpg or .jpeg).  Email to coordinator Lisa Gerlits no later than Friday, January 22nd.

 

3. A few days before the event, you will receive an email with all of the submissions from your group. We’ll also send you some basic critique group guidelines.

 

4.  Instructions on how to access the Zoom conferencing tool will be sent to you in an email a week before the event. We recommend a high speed internet connection and a quiet space or headphones. We’ll meet as a large group for faculty introductions, and then break off into smaller groups for critiques.

 

5. During the session, each participant will share their pieces along with any info about the medium used, etc. Others will take notes, jotting down what they like, what doesn’t work for them, and any questions they have.

 

6. The professional illustrator will verbally critique your work. If there’s time, other participants may comment. Take notes, as you will not receive written comments. Let the ideas simmer.

 

 


Check out this Summer 2020 Great Critique Book Shop flyer by Deb Bartsch:

 

The 2020 Summer Great Critique Faculty Book Flyer

 


Return to the Summer Great Critique main page.


 

 

 

 

The instructions below are not applicable for Summer 2020

GUIDELINES FOR IN-PERSON GREAT CRITIQUE EVENTS


 

 

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.

9.  Signed faculty books will be available for purchase and home delivery through our book sales rep!



 

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.

11.  Signed faculty books will be available for purchase and home delivery through our book sales rep!

 


Return to the Summer Great Critique main page.