Where We Grow

MWG Critique Circle, December 12th, 2023 | By Luke Dondo

The MWG Critique Circle presents its members the invaluable opportunity to socialize and workshop with writers in a secure and inclusive forum. The discussion of our craft and the improvement of our work, among meeting friends, among (possibly) getting a bit uncomfortable, is the goal, and probably you’ll even have fun. 

The Guild’s final Circle of the year was held on Tuesday December 12th, one of whose attendees was Sam Arnold, a writer since her youth, a former writer of fanfiction, a Guild member of three months, novelist, and publisher of an indie videogame. She read the first chapter of a girl-detective novel, a current work in progress of hers, and what feedback she received—tailored to her requests—was digested and put to work immediately. 

Powered by its attendees’ comments on the works put before them, moderated by a trustworthy rotation of board members and volunteers who know the Circle well, Andrew Dutfield, former Guild president and current organizer of the Critique Circles, put it well when saying that the MWG strives to have a supportive environment for its members. The Critique Circle is a shining example of this. With over 50 members on the list, an ongoing volunteer search for new moderators at hand, with hopes of adding to the two monthly meetings we already have, this community of ours develops to the benefit of all of us. 

For members new and old, you’ll find friendship here, you’ll find kinship, you’ll find that sense of community that writers at times might lack. But that community is here, it is alive and well, and it grows. 

At our debriefing of her experience at the last Critique Circle of 2023, Sam told me that she wished more people knew about it. And I tend to agree with her. If you, like myself, have ever found yourself labouring in front of your computer screen, watching letters and words wash over the bottomless pit of a thankless document, wondering, I wish I could talk to a writer about this, reach out. We’re here. We’re waiting. We’re typing mindlessly and probably going crazy but that’s okay because what fun is sane? It’s warm here; it’s Friendly Manitoba in a Zoom meeting, and it’s so nice to know that we’re not alone.

The next Critique Circle will be held in January, and all members are encouraged to join. Reach out to to get on the list.

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