There are quite a few groups where I live and work, and I’ve been lucky to find a couple that I really like. Having found them, I’m learning their value. First off, listening to other voices makes one’s own voice stronger, better. At risk of being obscure, it’s a little like the bracing that keeps the soundboard of a guitar from warping. In a fine instrument, the luthier shapes the bracing by shaving away parts that are unnecessary, leaving the soundboard as strong as it was before the shaping but more responsive … clearer sounding. That’s what a writing group does, at least for me. Torturing the musical simile a little more, having a good writer look at your own stuff is a little like listening to covers of a song you know well done by other musicians. You always love the original, but the covers broaden your horizons.