1. At the last meeting of the month, the meeting will be broken down into 4 to 5 time blocks, the first will be any announcements and notifications, the second dedicated to our mini-lesson, then the remaining 3 blocks of time will be dedicated to 2 or 3 of our members who have been randomly selected to do a special “presentation” of their work.
2. The people doing presentations must be different from the person assigned to do the mini-lesson
3. The writer’s presentation can be on something they are writing on, a new idea or anything else they may want to share with the group.
4. What makes this special is that those 2 or 3 writers who have been selected or who have volunteered or have been selected will have the floor for a full 30 minutes – up to 25 minutes dedicated to reading, with the remaining minutes dedicated to a thorough analysis and critique of the work presented by the group.
5. Those people selected to do their presentations will provide the members of the group with copies of the work to be evaluated.
6. The handouts given to the members on that day are for evaluation, analysis and critique only, and are to be returned with written notes and critiques at the end of each presentation.
7. At the end of the “presentations” meeting, a new batch of writers are to be selected and they will have one month to prepare their work for evaluation
I feel that if a person is allowed to read more of their work with a bigger block of time then they will be able to convey their ideas. I also believe that if they are given notes of their work, honest, thorough analysis of their work by their peers, then that writer will be even more encouraged to bring in material the next time they come. Many times we leave the meetings with a bit of advice, a bit of solid critique, but not all of it, or we forget some of the thoughts our peers put forth for our consideration when some of it may very well have been the difference in our work moving into the next stage. By providing the group with handouts, the members can read along with the presenter, make as many notes as they want, and then turn them back in to the presenter so that they can read the suggestions at home and decide whether to use the information or not. We sort of did a test run with one of our members last Saturday, and she was absolutely thrilled with the amount of feedback that she received.
If we look back at our charter, then we must remember that we are here to help each other out, we are here to give an honest critique of the work in order to see our members flourish. Here is a step in that direction. This is a new thing, so we are going to give it a real test run, if it works then…