Happy Sunday, RG2E Peeps!
Welcome to The RG2E and/or Welcome Back!
Have you ever thought about being a Beta Reader? Not sure what that is?
RG2E Featured Author Fabio Bueno will tell you all about it!
Take it away, Fabio…
The importance of beta-readers
As an author, I rely heavily on beta-readers. If you are unfamiliar with the term, here is one definition: a person who reads a draft of a book with the intent of offering suggestions that might improve the next draft. The beta works as a very informal editor.
As editors, they might help you with the big-picture (plot, character arcs, theme), the small-picture (grammar and spelling), and everything in-between (characterization, plot holes, dialogue, continuity errors, factual errors).
Beta-readers can save lives
Character’s lives, that is : )
If you are a writer, I urge you to have beta-readers. They will tell you where you strayed. If you went too far, or not far enough. If your tone is uneven. If the character you killed should be spared. If your villain is not mean enough. If you used “nauseous” when you meant “nauseated.” If the kayak kiosk on Green Lake Park is closed in October (it is).
I am a writer. How can I get beta-readers?
Just ask! Good candidates are day-job colleagues, friends, neighbors, and their family. You could choose people with writing experience or readers close to your target demographic. Some writers seek an eclectic team with diverse points of view: a teen, an adult, a fan of the genre, and a non-fan. Usually they will spot different areas of improvement. Social media is a great place to find them, too (see below).
Make sure you find willing beta-readers. Your beta-reader should have time to read your work. Most people are too busy and just cannot fit a careful reading of a book into their schedules. The ideal beta is one you trust. People you know will tell you the truth, no matter what, and that will offer constructive criticism.
I am an avid reader. How can I become a beta-reader?
More and more writers are looking for betas. Your writer friends will consider your request to be one. You can find authors online: on twitter, on Facebook, and on their author websites. Ask them. Some websites, like the World Literary Café (http://www.worldliterarycafe.com/forum/125 ), connect authors and readers.
How does it work?
It depends on the stage of the novel. Maybe it is a draft close to the final one, and the writer just wants a detailed grammar check. If it is one of the early drafts, the writer may be trying a few new ideas and needs feedback on some subplots. The writer must set guidelines explaining what she expects from the betas.
Some betas like to make annotations as they read, while others prefer to read all at once (to get the flow of the novel) and then come back for an in-depth analysis. A few betas jot down only the emotions the writing stirs on them (“this made me feel very angry with the character,” or “this didn’t work for me”). Other betas are much more technical and detail-oriented.
Is it worth it?
I strongly believe so! My generous beta-readers helped me fine-tune my novels. There is no doubt those works are better because of these wonderful friends. Betas get the books earlier, the gratitude of the writer, and, sometimes, a mention in the acknowledgments page of the published version : )
I hope you find this information useful. Happy (beta-) reading and writing!
(Thanks for having me over at RG2E, Deedee!)
Fabio Bueno writes Young Adult/Urban Fantasy/Paranormal novels. He resides in the Pacific Northwest with his wife and kids. When not writing or reading, he geeks out with family and friends, solidifies his reputation as the world’s slowest runner, and acts very snobbish about movies.
Witches inhabit our world, organized in covens and hiding behind a shroud of secrecy–the Veil.
Skye’s London coven sends her to Seattle’s Greenwood High to find the Singularity, an unusually gifted witch who may break the Veil and trigger a dangerous new era of witch-hunting. Things get complicated when Skye meets a charming new classmate, Drake. Skye’s job becomes even trickier when she clashes with Jane, an intimidating rival witch.
Drake falls for the mysterious Skye, but odd accidents, potion mix-ups, and the occasional brush with death kind of get in the way of romance. Once he discovers Skye is a witch, he goes to war for her, even though his only weapons are a nice set of abs and a sharp sense of humor.
Fighting off wicked Jane and the other dark forces hell-bent on seizing the Singularity’s immense power, Skye and Drake will risk everything to save the covens.
Going on a date has never been harder.
- On Amazon (readers can also download a free sample for kindle and free kindle apps)
- On Goodreads (free sample available in .epub format for most other e-readers)
Connect with Fabio here:
So, how many of you fabulous RG2E Peeps are Beta Readers? If not, would you consider becoming one?
And thank bunches to you, Fabio, for sharing the world of Beta Readers with us! 🙂
In the meantime, Fabio will treat 5 of you to an Ebook Gift Copy of WICKED SENSE, so let him know below if you’d like to win one!!!
The Best of RG2E Ereading Wishes — D. D. Scott, RG2E Founder