Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Ottawa Writer's Circle?

The OWC is a community of writers founded in September 2013. We're one of the largest and most active Meetup groups in Ottawa. We regularly host social mixers and a dozen critique circles. Our full event schedule can be found at All types of writers are welcome!

Why can't we just do it all online?

The OWC was created with the purpose of getting to know other writers and sharing our work. Writing is a very solitary experience, so we wanted to create an IRL writing community where there wasn't one before. There are a lot of online writing communities and critiquing websites that do all of those things way better than us. The OWC is here to facilitate IRL writer interactions, be it finding friends or critique partners. (Or both!)

Do I have to be in Ottawa to take part?

Well, kind of? Since the OWC is meant to facilitate IRL writer interactions, being in the same physical space is sometimes necessary. However, there's no barrier to participating in the forum or reading the blog. Go nuts!

Why aren't you doing [this thing that I want]?

We might be working on it! We have grand plans, but they're not all ready yet, including more writing workshops. If there's something you'd like to see, feel free to send us a note! The group runs on volunteers, so if there's something you'd like to see done, we can talk. (If you'd like to volunteer to get it running, all the better!)

What's a critique circle?

A critique circle is where a bunch of writers get together and share a piece of work for critique. About a week before the meeting, writers post their submission, usually a piece of about 3,000 words, in the Dropbox of the circle and take the week to critique the other pieces. Then, they all get together and chat about their comments. Usually, these are themed circles (short fiction, fantasy, YA, etc.) that meet about once a month with about five or six writers. All writers are welcome! We have a "Your First Critique Circle" that runs every month if you'd like to get your feet wet first before diving in!