Sunday, October 13, 2013


So you have a lovely book, and you think you are ready to take the plunge and submit it to a real, live editor. Or, like me, you have researched the field and decided your book's genre is not a good fit for most publishing companies, or perhaps it's too short for most editors to consider and you have decided to self-publish. You know which company you are going with and you are ready to hit that 'submit' button on your computer and send your child out into the world.
Please don't. Not until you have considered Scribophile.
I have posted my work on many critique forums, some helpful and some horrid. Most of the time, I would either receive a: no reviews at all or b: gushing reviews from people who just wanted me to give gushing reviews back.
Finally, someone critiquing my work in another forum suggested Scribophile. I had been working on my novella for over two years and thought I was almost finished. I had a college English teacher friend and a copy editor check it for errors and I really just wanted an opinion on the creative aspects.
Boy, was I in for a shock! The first few reviews, while complimentary, tore my story to pieces. But when I really thought about their suggestions, I knew they were, for the most part, absolutely right.
So, three months later, my little 17,000 word novella is as ready as it will ever be. It is such a better book because of my friends at Scribophile.
A few helpful hints to get your book critiqued quickly on the site:

Get a Premium membership: It's only 9.00 per month and worth every penny, especially when you price professional critique services.

Be active in the forums. Sometimes people will come check out your work just because you wrote something interesting in the forums.

Join active groups. Choose groups in your genres of writing and join them, just make sure they have recent posts.

Post short sections: Most critique participants shy away from book sections longer than 3000 words.

Post your best work. Only post chapters or stories that you have spell checked and edited to the best of your ability.

The best thing about Scribophile is you will get critiques. You can only post chapters based on your karma points and these are mostly earned by reviewing.

Have you used Scribophile? Feel free to share below!  Scribophile's Site


  1. So far my experience with Scribophile has been wonderful. I've been on other websites where the "Me! Me! Me!" attitude exists, and people are only out to get feedback, not give it. The way Scribophile is set up nullifies this mentality, I think, because everyone realizes they have to give in order to receive.

    Of course, the other fantastic thing about Scribophile is the sense of community. People are more willing to help one another because it means networking their own work in the long run.

  2. I've recently renewed my membership, so I've passed my first year Scribophile anniversary. Like you, I thought my book was ready to go and I actually joined to see if I could get some help with a different project that had gone a bit off-track. I was so impressed that I posted my so-called 'finished' book as well and the feedback I got was so helpful and insightful. I am thrilled with the outcome. Silvana, which is being published this month, is far far better than it would ever have been without the input from fellow Scribbers! Plus, as you say, the sense of community is great. And the moderators keep everyone playing nice, which for an on-line group is so important.
    Glad you are enjoying your experience there, and god luck with your book.

  3. Scrib...such a wonderful place, where fellow writers convene in a forum of mutual respect as they critique each others' work. I am so glad I found Scrib. It is a professional group where you can receive honest feedback and share the trials and tribulations that all writers go through. The pats on the back are your warm fuzzy to keep moving forward even when you are down in the dumps and constructive feedback when you thought your work was ready to go. Whatever feedback you receive you can rest assured that it is thoroughly examined to ensure that the environment remains professional at all times. I have been a member for a few months and have loved every minute. I have met a network of people who provide support and make me laugh through it all. LOVE YOU SCRIB!

  4. I felt stuck in my writing, bored and uncertain and a bit alone. Joining Scrib was one of the smartest things I've done lately and the single smartest thing I've done for my writing. G

  5. Scrib has been an eye-opening experience for me. I've been a member for over 2 years and have learned an amazing amount of craft in that short time.
    You can learn as much from critiquing a piece as you can from writing a piece. Having the ability to read other people's opinions on your work as well as seeing how their opinions differ on another person's work - gives you an insight into crafting stories that you just can't get from a book.
    I belong to a local writing group with about 20 members. I also belong to Scribophile which (I assume) has thousands of members - it is pretty easy math to see where you're going to get the best bang for your buck.

  6. Proofreading is damn important. (I heard Mark Twain said to replace "very" with "damn" and your copy editor will delete them.) If you don't proofread to the best of your ability, you'll get only line edits correcting spelling and grammar. If you proofread to the best of your ability and still get those comments, they can be helpful; but you don't want to squander your critiques by being lazy. The most helpful critiques get to story issues; plot, character, pacing, etc. The best urge you to do a total rewrite. Polishing tips help, too, but you want to make sure they're really polish and not just correcting your bad/lazy writing.