FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What’s the procedure for joining Women Who Write?
Please fill out the e-mail form here, if you are over 18 and female. It’s helpful if you briefly describe your writing background or interest, your preferred genre, whether you would like a critique group, and if so, where you live and what days/times work best for you for a critique group. You will receive an e-mail response from our VP Membership. She will send you a membership brochure and advise you of the next steps.
Do I have to be published to join or have a writing background?
Not at all. We encourage women in all stages of their writing, whether beginners or experienced writers. You also don’t have to be someone who wants to publish her work necessarily; you just have to be a woman who wants to write.
What sort of commitment is involved in being in a critique group?
It varies, but in general, groups meet either once or twice a month at a set time and location. The group coordinator will solicit manuscript submissions, and the members submit via e-mail to the entire group about a week in advance of the meeting when the manuscripts are critiqued. (Some poetry groups do not submit via e-mail in advance but read poems aloud at the meetings.) Depending on the group size, not every member will submit a manuscript before each meeting; there is a limit so that the amount of critiquing will not be overwhelming. Members are expected to provide written and oral feedback of each others’ manuscripts at the in-person meeting. If you join Women Who Write, you will receive a booklet describing critique group guidelines.
Are all of the critique groups listed on your webpage?
No. New groups open up all the time, and we do not always update the website immediately. The VP Membership will be able to tell you about all of our groups, and which ones are open or full.
What if you don’t have a critique group in my geographic area? Can I start one?
If there isn’t a convenient critique group for you, we can advertise in your area that there’s interest in forming a new group. We may already have people on a waiting list for your area. Once we have a few people who are interested, we can get a group going. Someone who has been a member of a Women Who Write critique group for at least a year must oversee the new group at first.
Do you have any online groups?
No, but we are looking to form online groups. If you are interested, please let us know. When we have enough people in your genre to start an online group, we will start one.
Can I join Women Who Write without being in a critique group?
Absolutely. There are benefits to being a member besides being in a critique group. We host writing-related programs throughout the year, such as our annual conference, workshops, readings, retreats, and networking events. As a member, you can submit articles for Writers’ Notes (our newsletter), manuscripts for possible publication in Goldfinch (our literary magazine), and you can contribute to our blog. We have many volunteer opportunities within the organization as well.