Creative work is often solitary work. Creators work inside their own heads and with their own hands most of the time. But, as the famous John Donne quote instructs, no person is an island. We are part of the whole in this creative life. We need our creative community.
SCBWI is a community of creators. A community that exists to help each other create our best work. Getting feedback on your work is an important part of the creative process. Feedback helps us to grow as creative individuals and to gain confidence, which prepares our work for publication.
A critique group helps each other improve their creative skills. Traditional critique groups meet in person on a regular basis. They read each other's manuscripts and give comments to the author. Online groups meet in cyberspace and provide critiques through e-mail, Google Docs, Zoom, or other websites.
Kansas / Missouri SCBWI offers a number of resources to help you gain feedback on your work. Critique services are a benefit only available to current members of SCBWI. If you are not a member and would like to join, please click here.
Joining or starting a critique group can be overwhelming. Visit our critique FAQ page for more information about the benefits, what to expect, and tips to help you succeed.
Any SCBWI member can attend open Critique Groups in your area. If you would like to add your critique group to this list, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to be added.
NOTE: The SCBWI KS/MO region doesn't facilitate or run any of the above critique groups. Instead, we are attempting to provide a clearing house for regional critique groups.
SCBWI Discussion Boards have threads where SCBWI members can request critique partners and respond to requests. These critique partnerships are usually online only. Click HERE for the SCBWI Discussion Boards.
There are several groups meeting in Kansas and Missouri for both writers and illustrators. These include networking groups, critique groups, Facebook groups, and others.
Online Illustrator Critique Group
Need an illustrator group to call your own? Tired of working all alone with no like minds to cheer you on? Need a deadline to buoy your resolve to better your portfolio, book or freelance piece? If so, come join our First Tuesday Illustrator’s Zoom critique group at 7:00-9:00 p.m. Contact: Kim Wilson at email@example.com.
Creve Coeur Critique Group
Meeting virtually and outdoors. Current focus Picture Books. Contact: Katie Gast, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Florissant Critique Group
This group meets via Zoom on the first Wednesday of the month at 4:30 pm. Contact Sue Bradford Edwards, email@example.com, for more information.
St. Louis City Critique Group
Third Sunday of each month at 1:30 pm. Meeting virtually via Zoom and e-mail. Limited to Middle Grade and Young Adult fiction. Contact: Jared Kyle Manuczuk, firstname.lastname@example.org.
A beta reader is a test reader who reads unpublished work and provides feedback from the viewpoint of an average reader. If you would like to be a beta reader for the region, contact Mike Hays at email@example.com.
Current KS/MO SCBWI Beta Readers
Tomi Rues (PB/Early Reader) - email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Laura Stewart Schmidt (MG or YA; No fantasy or spec fiction) - email@example.com.
If you are looking for online critique groups/partners, or are starting a group and would like to have your group’s info added to the list, please contact Mike Hays, our region's Critique Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
NOTE: If none of these listed options work for you, consider creating your own or taking advantage of many of the online critique platforms. Here is a starting point for that search:
The Write Life: 41 Places to Find a Critique Partner to Improve Your Writing.
NOTE: SCBWI is not affiliated with this site or any of the groups listed and cannot vouch for the authenticity, reliability, or integrity of these entities.