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Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Become a part of a Challenge Buddy Group today and work with other members to fine tune your entry (and help them do the same).

Moderators: Deb Porter, RedBaron

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Deb Porter
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Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby Deb Porter » Mon Sep 26, 2011 11:06 pm

As mentioned in another thread, one of the things we will be encouraging with the new Challenge is the member-initiated formation of small critique/buddy groups. This will enable members to seek input and proofing from their Challenge buddies before submitting their entries.

The initial idea and writing of the entry still needs to be by the individual member. However, in a complete reversal to everything we've said until now, after the initial writing has been done (and self-edited), members are encouraged to work with their buddy group to fine tune their entry and hone their skills.

Please note: Professional editing is still off limits.

Also, unlike the past, we will now be encouraging buddies to be from a mixture of levels. In other words, from now on we would love to see groups comprising members from at least three different levels (although, of course, those levels will change as people move up the ranks, and that's fine).

Challenge buddies work together by email, so buddies can be from anywhere in the world. The only suggestion would be to probably have poetry buddies stick together.

So, why am I suddenly lightening up on this? Simple answer--to ensure everyone has the opportunity to submit their best work each week, and the room to grow as a writer by being a part of a Challenge critique group.

Anyway, if you would like to find a Challenge buddy group (or get one started), either post a new message in this forum or post a response to another person's post in this forum. (Don't post a buddy request in reply to this message, as your request may end up getting lost in a long thread.)

Challenge Buddy Forum

When you start a new buddy request thread, make sure you mention what level you are currently in and also whether you are looking for poetry buddies or prose buddies.

Try to limit the groups to no more than four people (one from each level initially, if possible, but don't stress if you double up). Also, try to commit to be in that particular buddy group for at least one series of the Challenge (in other words, for the duration of one Challenge theme). Of course, that may not always be possible, but at least try to make that commitment to one another.

When acting as a buddy, use the judges' rating categories to help pick up the weaknesses and strengths of each piece.

Anyway, this is a complete turn around from everything we've said before regarding buddies, and I'll be more than happy to answer any queries you may have. The important thing is to provide every opportunity for you all to make your entries shine.

Love, Deb
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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby RedBaron » Tue Sep 27, 2011 8:18 am

This is pretty cool. :) I love it. Now to pray about it, as I haven't entered in a long time.
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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby CatLin » Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:00 am

Deb, I don't think I've told you lately how awesome you are!!!

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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby OldManRivers » Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:56 am

Me too!

Deb, you are among the Lord's remarkable servants, bringing a gracious touch to the ministry of Faithwriters.

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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby lish1936 » Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:41 pm

Anyway, if you would like to find a Challenge buddy group (or get one started), either post a new message in this forum or post a response to another person's post in this forum. (Don't post a buddy request in reply to this message, as your request may end up getting lost in a long thread.)

When you start a new buddy request thread, make sure you mention what level you are currently in and also whether you are looking for poetry buddies or prose buddies.


Super idea, Deb. :bow

I don't know how it was previously done, but perhaps, there should be just one Challenge Buddy forum where all requests are posted; sort of like a Buddy Want Ad, so that one does not have to surf the Board Index, or have a thread overlooked. If that's not possible, then perhaps a separate forum for each genre...Challenge Buddy for Fiction, etc. Also, what happens if you change your genre from week to week? Can you change from one Buddy group to another on a weekly basis? Ex: You write poetry one week, but fiction or non-fiction the next.

Lillian :typing2
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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby RedBaron » Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:43 pm

Ask and you shall receive...

Challenge Buddy Groups

lish1936 wrote:I don't know how it was previously done, but perhaps, there should be just one Challenge Buddy forum where all requests are posted; sort of like a Buddy Want Ad, so that one does not have to surf the Board Index, or have a thread overlooked. If that's not possible, then perhaps a separate forum for each genre...Challenge Buddy for Fiction, etc. Also, what happens if you change your genre from week to week? Can you change from one Buddy group to another on a weekly basis? Ex: You write poetry one week, but fiction or non-fiction the next.

Lillian :typing2
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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby lish1936 » Tue Sep 27, 2011 1:15 pm

Oh! :oops: This is it! :roll:

Shari, in an attempt to deflect my gross oversight, :D let's turn to the second part of my question. Can we switch weekly, or will that be at the discretion of the group?

Lillian
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I write even when I think I can't, because I must. :-)

I love to write. Nothing escapes the crush I have on the written word. I'm hooked on words!!

"Let words bewitch you. Scrutinze them, mull them, savor them, and in combination, until you see their subtle differences and the ways they tint each other." Francis Flaherty

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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby RedBaron » Tue Sep 27, 2011 4:01 pm

That's ok :)

And the 2nd part, Deb'll have to answer that, I know as much as you do :)

lish1936 wrote:Oh! :oops: This is it! :roll:

Shari, in an attempt to deflect my gross oversight, :D let's turn to the second part of my question. Can we switch weekly, or will that be at the discretion of the group?

Lillian
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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby Deb Porter » Tue Sep 27, 2011 7:35 pm

Hi Lillian. No worries if you switch things around from time to time. It's just if someone writes poetry for the most part, then it would probably be a better fit with other poetry writers. There are probably quite a few people who do both, so that could be a group all by itself.

To be honest, it's all up to you guys. Mentioning poetry or prose when you post your notice for a buddy (or respond to one) is just to help facilitate things a bit, but it all comes down to the people in the group. Apart from providing this avenue for you all to connect in this way, the rest is up to you.

I think it's going to help a lot of writers move forward in the skill, and provide valuable feedback. As long as the original idea and article is written by the one member without group input. Once that's done, it's time for buddy fine-tuning.

(And I've gone back to my original post and included a link to the Buddy Forum.)

Love, Deb
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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby lish1936 » Tue Sep 27, 2011 8:51 pm

Sorry to have SO many questions, but I have one more. :wink:

Deb, did I read somewhere that we will use categories to critique Challenge articles similar to the ones the judges' use? If so, when will those guidelines become available, or did I miss that, too? :o

I think the guidelines represent an integral factor in making the Buddy system more meaningful and effective.

Lillian :typing2
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I write even when I think I can't, because I must. :-)

I love to write. Nothing escapes the crush I have on the written word. I'm hooked on words!!

"Let words bewitch you. Scrutinze them, mull them, savor them, and in combination, until you see their subtle differences and the ways they tint each other." Francis Flaherty

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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby Deb Porter » Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:31 pm

Hi Lillian. All the rating categories are here on the boards:

viewtopic.php?f=54&t=31273

For now, you can just make note of the categories, and then use them to evaluate each entry as you read. Get a piece of paper and mark eight columns (one for each of the categories) and then just rate each entry on a scale 0.0 to 5.0 as you read.

Basically, 0.0 would mean they absolutely missed the boat (usually only given to someone who is completely off topic for that category). Up to about 1.9 would be considered Poor; 2.0-2.4 would be below average; 2.5-2.9 is considered average; 3.0 to 3.4 is above average; 3.5 to 3.9 is good; 4.0 to 4.4 is very good; 4.5 to 4.9 is excellent; and 5.0 is reserved for perfect.

Doing it with pen and paper will still help you clearly identify strengths and weaknesses. The only thing it won't do is provide the combined average of all the ratings for that entry (which is found by adding all the ratings for that entry and then dividing by the number of categories (8).

In the next week or so I will make a sample rating sheet available to those who would like to do it the same way as the judges. However, to use the sheet will require either Excel or Open Office. So if you have either of those programs, you'll be welcome to use the sheets.

Stay tuned.

Love, Deb
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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby lish1936 » Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:11 pm

Deb, this helps a heap. I've been around the Board a time or two, :D but never saw this one. I'm sure my question and your answer benefited others as well.

Thanks,

Lillian :typing2 .
E-Book - Retirement Lane - How to Celebrate Life After 60

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I write even when I think I can't, because I must. :-)

I love to write. Nothing escapes the crush I have on the written word. I'm hooked on words!!

"Let words bewitch you. Scrutinze them, mull them, savor them, and in combination, until you see their subtle differences and the ways they tint each other." Francis Flaherty

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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby helen1975 » Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:29 pm

Hi everyone!

Thanks so much for this Deb! I am so excited ... now, who to stalk to be my buddy....?!?!?!

:sofa :hide :heehee :grouphug3

Blessings,

Helen

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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby Deb Porter » Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:30 pm

helen1975 wrote:Hi everyone!

Thanks so much for this Deb! I am so excited ... now, who to stalk to be my buddy....?!?!?!

:sofa :hide :heehee :grouphug3

Blessings,

Helen


They'd be blessed to have you, Helen! Stalk away (or at least post a request ... LOL) :lol:
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Re: Find a Challenge Buddy (or Two ... or Three)

Postby lish1936 » Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:38 pm

Deb,
Hopefully, this will be the last question. :sorry The Rating categories will be very helpful in critiquing my work and others. My question pertains to how well these questions apply to poetry; i.e. grammar and predictability..opening paragraph hook... Should we consider other aspects when critiquing a poem? Rhyming, timing, etc?

Lillian :typing2
E-Book - Retirement Lane - How to Celebrate Life After 60

Fortunate 500


I write even when I think I can't, because I must. :-)

I love to write. Nothing escapes the crush I have on the written word. I'm hooked on words!!

"Let words bewitch you. Scrutinze them, mull them, savor them, and in combination, until you see their subtle differences and the ways they tint each other." Francis Flaherty

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