Quote Originally Posted by SAWeiner View Post
How do you know that the new person/people will be any better than the others you've relied on?
Watch how they crit other people. It’s easier to be objective when you have no skin in the game. You’ll get a feel for who is more interested in looking smart vs being helpful/encouraging, who seems to know what they’re talking about (because their crits make sense to you, or they see things you couldn’t see till they pointed it out) and who talks a good game but doesn’t back it up with good writing. If you’re paying for it, treat it like a job interview and ask for references/examples.

Quote Originally Posted by SAWeiner View Post
How do you know they know what they are talking about, are reviewing carefully enough, and are not afraid to hurt your feelings?
This is the eternal problem. You’ll chance on people who are good eggs, do everything you can to keep in their good graces ;-) For the well-meaning rest, you can help the process by being specific about the feedback you’re after. There are good strategies to that end explained in:

Wired for Story (Ch 12)
Critical Response Process (...the whole thing...)
Playwright’s Guidbook (Ch 12 again, lols, and not only applicable to plays...)