There have been some very thoughtful questions and concerns about The Infanticide Exchange and it's probably a good idea to address those publicly. I'll do this again, I'm sure, but for now I'm just posting an email response (heavily edited... along with some extra snippets) I sent to an inquirer.
1. There are rules on The Infanticide Exchange concerning the difference between being "blunt" and being "insulting." Trust me, we'll come down on "dicks for dicks sake."
2. Artists of any genre (and you know this... just repeating for posterity) have thick skins. Back when I was actually pursuing writing as a career (and despite popular belief, I gave up on that about 3 years ago), I ran the gamut... got notes from everything stating "go back to school" to "blockbuster." Since I've moved to the other side of that fence, I often dole out similar notes. In short, if someone's even half-serious about attempting publication, they need to get used to it. Otherwise, they shouldn't even bother (a good friend of mine has one of his... more colorful... rejection letters framed on his mantle. It's quite insulting and hilarious... but he keeps submitting!).
3. The Infanticide Exchange is private because it's not for "bloggers." Exclusivity is not an issue, it's simply for people who want to get published and have a desire to protect their copyright without plots and characters flying around the Internet. We're not interested in helping out with The Tenth Daughter of Memory, Theme Thursday, Magpie Tales, or other creative meme entries. This is to review works that authors plan on sending out for print and paycheck. In fact, I'll be REALLY PISSED if someone submits on The Infanticide Exchange and I read the submission on their blog later.
4. The Infanticide Exchange is NOT a competitive site.
5. The way it's set up, you "try it for a day" before making any final decision. If it's not for you, then don't ask for an author invite. But there's no harm in looking.
6. And, by the way, nobody gets to sign up just to critique others. Put your stuff up, or shut your stuff up. Hence, "exchange."
Any other questions? Just ask!
Don't know what The Infanticide Exchange is? Read this.
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