Are beta-readers like unicorns – can’t find any? Perhaps my writing circle at a local level is narrow but folks with both willingness and insight are hard to find in some areas. Here are a few ways to recruit readers.
Not familiar with beta-reading? Simply put, these are people who are willing to read your work and provide feedback – they are testing your story for all the problems it has. They are useful to engage when you are a little further along than just a rough draft but maybe not ready for professional, detailed editing. Beta-readers let you know many things about your work that you miss in some way be it slow action, confusion about details or ideas that improve your concept. These readers are like a focus group and they are even more helpful in genre reading. This article provides sensible questions you can use with your beta-readers which can provide you valuable feedback.
- Querying for them: check out #betareaders on Twitter – just post your needs and genre on Twitter with this hashtag and you will likely receive replies. Regular scans of this hashtag may reveal several possible beta-readers.
- Hire a unicorn tracker! Just kidding
- Ask for volunteers from your website
- Read this post from Belinda Pollard with a variety of suggestions.
- Also, here’s another article from Writing by the Seat of My Pants with another good list at the end.
Have ever used beta-readers? Do you have suggestions for finding beta-readers? Ever caught a unicorn? I’d love to hear from you so won’t you leave a question, idea or strategy in the comment section? I’d also love to connect with you over social media so check my contact page for that information. See the News page for announcements and remember to sign-up to receive news and posts by email. I’ve added a new sign-up tab on my FaceBook page to simplify the process. New followers can download The Black Bag via free coupon today!
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