I'm more than halfway done with my first edits, which means I'm ready to start looking for beta readers for SANYARE. I have a few people in mind, but I'm hoping to find five people to provide detailed, critical feedback on the story.
What is a beta reader? What do they have to do?
Definition From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia An alpha reader or beta reader (also spelled alphareader / betareader, or shortened to alpha / beta), also pre-reader or critiquer, is a person who reads a written work, generally fiction, with the intent to find and improve elements such as grammar and spelling, as well as suggestions to improve the story, its characters, or its setting. Beta reading is typically done before the story is released for public consumption. Beta readers are not explicitly proofreaders or editors, but can serve in that context. Elements highlighted by beta readers encompass things such as plot holes, problems with continuity, characterisation or believability; in fiction and non-fiction, the beta might also assist the author with fact-checking.
For me personally, beta readers are individuals unrelated to me, who can and will provide honest and critical feedback to help polish and improve the novel. They read with the understanding that the novel is a draft, and work with me to refine the story before publication. All feedback will be taken seriously and evaluated for incorporation into the final manuscript.
I will provide the manuscript in the reader's preferred format (pdf, Kindle, ePub, or print), along with a short questionnaire. Each reader is welcome to provide whatever criticism they feel appropriate. Once sent out, beta readers will have at least two weeks to read the novel and send back their critique with the completed questionnaire.
Beyond asking for clarification if I don't understand some of the feedback, I will not respond to the criticism nor take anything personally. I won't debate or argue, I won't hate you forever, and I won't write nasty things about you. In fact, I want the hard criticism, the more specific the better. But I also might not change every item you point out. Fair warning.
What do beta readers get in return?
Beta readers are critical to the creation of a great story. In addition to my undying gratitude and a mention in the "Special Thanks" page, betas will receive a free copy of the published novel.
When will the betas be chosen?
My goal is to have the first edits completed by January 31, which means I'll need my betas lined up by then. As soon as the edits are done, I will send out the manuscript.
How do I sign up?
If you're interested in being a beta reader for SANYARE, please sign up for my newsletter and click the "Beta Reader" button in the "Special Interests" box. Signing up for the newsletter will also keep you informed of any big announcements, events, and freebies. Newsletter mailings will be infrequent, and non-spammy.
Depending on how many people are interested, I may request additional information about reader backgrounds and interests before selecting the five betas for this round of editing. However, unless you unsubscribe to my newsletter, you will be kept in the pool for future beta reading if I need additional feedback.
As a reminder, here's the elevator pitch for SANYARE:
Nuriel "Rie" Lhethannien is a human serving as a messenger for the High Court of Elves. After surviving a chance encounter with Shadow Realm assassins, Rie will be executed as a traitor, unless she can prove her innocence and find the mastermind behind the attack. Outcast and on the run, Rie finds herself drawn into treacherous political games while uncovering the truth of her mysterious heritage.