All writers, I think, go through times when they feel insecure about their writing skills. (Well maybe not awesome writers like Jane Yolen or Patricia Polacco, or Mo Willems.) That's one of the reasons I like having a critique group. Even though these fellow writers are telling me things that need to be improved in my story, they're doing so because they want my writing to be the best it can be. And that's a really positive, affirming place for me. It makes me want to write better.
So, keeping that in mind, you'll understand why I'm disappointed with my local critique group. I joined this group a year ago and became the 4th member. One of the originals dropped out, and then we were three. True to my teacher, I'm-in-charge personality, I became the motivator, the reminder of meeting dates, the suggester of changes to make us more efficient and get more manuscripts worked on in our monthly meeting. I even brought 3 more people into the group.
And over the past 3 months, the group seems to be collapsing.
Instead of 6 people showing up, it was 4. One month, it was just 2 people. Is it me??????????????? Doesn't anyone else realize how vital a critique group is for a writer?
Or maybe, some of them are just discouraged because the writing process that leads to publication can take a long, long time. Like 4 years, or 6 years, or more. I've been writing for 3 years now and I'm finally at the point where I think my writing is worthy of publication. (Of course, that hasn't been verified by too many editors or agents yet!)
Maybe my fellow critiquers are feeling insecure about their writing. There's a good reason to show up for the writers group; we can make them feel supported and encouraged.
Or maybe, I need to find some more people to join us......