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Working with a critique partner

By Mayra Cuevas

Find Yourself a Critique Partner

Find yourself a critique partner was some of the first advice I received from published authors.  The first time I heard this I stared at the speaker blankly. What the hell is a critique partner? And where do you find one?

As always, I turned to my trusty friend Google.

A search for “critique partner definition” answered the first question. The role of the critique partner was to read my story, provide encouragement and point out what I needed to work on (more details on this below).

A search for “finding a critique partner” led me to a website that promised I would find the critique partner of my dreams. It was clear before I dived in I needed a strategy. Read more

Outlining Queen, or how I discovered that I’m NOT a pantser

By Mayra Cuevas

I’ll admit it, when I began writing the first draft of my novel I was clueless. I’m still clueless to a certain extent, but less so after having survived the first draft.

For two years before I started writing the first draft I carried around a pile of note cards with various thoughts on characters, plot and locations. Then in February of this year, I took an online course entitled Writing Young Adult Fiction. The course helped me organize those ideas into something that someone, somewhere would want to read someday.

By the end of the course I was feeling so optimistic about the process that I took three days off of work to write. Read more