Teenagers and Writing Critique Groups = Creativity Killers
Remember being a teenager? It seemed you had to hide any bit of individuality from the mob of your peers and their judgy-ness.
Maybe that was just me. It wasn’t weird that I quoted Shakepeare, danced to swing music and carried vocabulary flashcards in my purse. No. Not weird.
I have teenagers now and guess what? They’re still judgy! And I’m still weird. (I’m told this constantly.) But now, I like my weird. We’ve grown attached to each other. We clique off and snicker about our critics. In my head, we ARE the popular kids.
I’m all grown up now. But writing critique groups can kill creativity in much the same way as the high school mean girls can.
The first time I went to a writers critique group. I was young, not much older than a teenager, really. The group met in an adorable bohemian café that had ombre walls, sold forty different types of tea and had jam poetry sessions that packed the place. This is being a writer, I said to myself. How romantic! Continue reading