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Wednesday, August 30, 2017

5 Things You Should Know about Beta Reading

Today we're going to talk about beta reading. Honestly I'm surprised I haven't blogged about this yet?? BECAUSE I'VE DONE THIS THING A LOT. I've had alphas for my own novel. I've alpha/beta read for numerous other people. I enjoy critiquing! I enjoy editing! (but not my own work hahahaha) I should have shared about this earlier? But actually I didn't think of it until now. Whoops.

Originally, I had this post titled "Everything You Need to Know about Beta Reading." But no. I changed it. Because even if I DID know everything there is to know about this subject (lol I don't), I WOULD NOT be posting it all into the same post. That would be way too much information and my brain would hate me afterwards. So I'm sharing five thoughts instead of 14679389 because that's how many you can find out there. YOUR BRAIN WILL THANK ME LATER.

(Also, most of this post applies to critiquing in general- so both alpha reading and beta reading. Just so you know. xD)


This point is more for if you're HAVING beta readers as opposed to beta reading for someone else. (because if it's their project, they're gonna choose the platform. xD) I think most of us are already familiar with this, but I'm still putting this in because GOOGLE. DOCS. IS. THE. BEST. 

For those of you who don't know, it basically allows you to invite multiple people to leave comments across the same doc. Then you can resolve the comments individually. Or, your readers can make suggestions directly into the text that you can accept or reject. It makes beta reading sooo much smoother and easier. Quick list of pros and cons because why not: 

P R O S 

- People don't leave the same comment. If you see something, someone else might have already caught that and commented about it. Then you can just comment "agreed." 

- Resolving comments is OFFICIALLY THE EASIEST THING EVER. 

- Your readers can dialogue if there's any disagreement on feedback. 

- Your readers can type their ideas directly into the text (as a suggestion.) Then, you just hit the check mark if you like their idea instead of having to manually type their idea into the text. It makes fixing grammar errors soooo much easier. 

C O N S 

- It can be a little bit slow if you have a longer doc. I broke my novel up into 16 parts for my alpha readers, so no one had to deal with a slow-loading doc. But if you do your whole novel in the same doc? It may take a while to load. 

- Sometimes it glitches.

- I STILL HAVEN'T FIGURED OUT HOW TO DO AN EM-DASH WHICH IS A PAIN. Although this is probably more because of my blond-ness, not Google Doc's incompetence, so this technically doesn't belong here. xD

When you're giving someone feedback on their writing, there's a fine line between your opinion and things that actually do not work and must be changed. I've seen a lot of people present their OPINION as a FACT when it comes to beta reading. To be honest, I'VE PROBABLY DONE IT MYSELF. 

It's important to be careful that we don't try and force what we think on the writer. If it's something grammatical, like a misspelling or a misplaced comma, or if it's something that you can back up with concrete reasoning, then it's probably a FACT. It has to be changed, period. (excepting those rare occasions when you're making grammatical mistakes on purpose) 

But, what if it's something more vague? Something like: "This word doesn't quite fit." 

First, don't feel like you're NOT ALLOWED to mention something like that. If you were beta reading for me, I'd want for you to point that out. It's totally okay to mention vague things that you can't quite find specific reasons for. Maybe they'll see your comment and immediately realize that the word doesn't seem to fit to them, either. 

But, on the flip side, don't act like they HAVE to change that word because it doesn't fit to you. That's an opinion! Maybe the word sounds totally fine to everyone else. 

The key here is not taking yourself too seriously- if you're beta reading for someone, it's okay for them to choose not to accept some of your feedback. NOT A BIG DEAL. CHILL. Also, if you're having people beta read for you, you don't have to accept all of their feedback. Just make sure you're choosing not to accept their feedback for INTENTIONAL and SPECIFIC reasons- not because you plain don't like what they're saying. 



Beta reading is about making your book better. And the main way that you can help someone make their book better is by pointing out things you think they should change, obviously. I THINK WE ALL GET THAT.

But, it's important to balance your positive and your negative feedback. I'm not saying you should have an equal amount of positive and negative comments- in fact, more of your comments will be negative. They should be negative. Like I already mentioned, that's kinda how we improve our books. 

HOWEVER. Should this stop you from making positive comments? NO. Positive comments about your book make the negative ones waaay easier to take. (trust me on this. xD) Plus, they help encourage whoever you're beta reading for to edit! If you make ONLY negative comments, then the person may end up thinking that their book is garbage. THERE GOES THE EDITING MOTIVATION. 

Find good things about whatever you're reading. Even if the positives aren't jumping out at you, you'll find them if you pay attention and watch closely. 


Often when I'm beta reading, I'll see other people leaving comments like: "This feels awkward." Or: "This isn't very clear." 

Is that the WRONG way to beta read? Nope. Not at all. 

However, a great way to make your comments more clear is to suggest solutions. Let's take this comment as an example, since I've seen it a lot: "This feels awkward." 

SO. THERE ARE 2 THINGS WE CAN DO WITH THIS. One, we can leave it as is and hope the author can figure out exactly how the sentence in question is awkward, or two, we can suggest a specific change that we think will help correct the issue. 

The author wrote the sentence, and they didn't think it was awkward then. Why would they think it's awkward now? The reason suggesting a specific change is better is because it can help the author see exactly HOW their sentence is awkward- and it can show them that there are better alternatives. 

The key here is SUGGEST. Not command. Suggest. This ties back to point #2 about facts and opinions. If you're giving the author an idea to use, that's an OPINION. SO DON'T MAKE IT A FACT OR A COMMAND. 

That's why so many of my comments use the phrase "maybe try this." If you SUGGEST a specific solution, then you're getting the author to look at their sentence differently. You're getting their thoughts rolling. Maybe they don't take your exact suggestion- maybe they'll think of something else. But it was your suggestion that enabled them to look at their sentence from a new perspective and come up with a better alternative. Which means you've done your job well! :D 



Statistics show that having a deadline will probably save you at least 27 hours during the beta reading process. (actually I made that up on the spot but ROLL WITH IT OKAY.) 

Basically the only reason this is a fantastic thing to do is because if you set deadlines, you save SO MUCH TIME. Just having that motivation there for both and your readers helps everyone stay focused. *nods* If you don't believe me then ask anyone else and they'll tell you THE SAME THING. (but obviously you believe me, RIGHT?? XD)



ALRIGHT THERE IT IS. That post ended up being way longer than I intended, so kudos to you if you read the whole thing. xD Anyone else have some thoughts on beta reading? Anyone agree with my thoughts? (I MEAN I HOPE A FEW PEOPLE DO xP) 

~ Jonathan 

80 comments:

  1. Great great great post *nodnod* This was really helpful and will be used once my drafts are ready. (something about first drafts and me? xD) And also for beta reading of course. AND FACTS AND OPINIONS, word of truth, its so tough to figure out what is awkward or what is weird about something when no one tells you. I know how frustrating that can be through my alpha reading experiences.

    Anyway this was very helpful Jonathan! Well done!

    Anna | www.worldthroughherheart.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks! GOOD LUCK FINISHING YOUR FIRST DRAFTS. That's always the hardest part- beta reading is a breeze in comparison. xD

      Glad you found it helpful! :D

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  2. THIS IS SO HELPFUL K. I have only beta read one book but I'm almost done with the second draft of my book (gulp) so now I'm going to have to look for alpha readers (I have one and she's amazing but... I might need more). So this was great timing and extremely helpful. I already said that didn't I. XD

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    1. THANK YOU. Heeey second draft, that's awesome! You'll do FANTASTIC with alpha readers, especially if your book is already on it's second draft. :D (For the record, I had three people alpha reading my book and I think that was just about perfect. In case that's any help at all. xD)

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  3. YES TO EVERYTHING YOU SAID. *nods* I've also been on the receiving and giving end of beta reading, so this was helpful on multiple levels. Thanks! ;)

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    1. YES I'M GLAD SOME PEOPLE AGREE THEN. XD Oh yeaaah I remember when I beta read The Princess and I as a newbie beta reader- LOOK AT HOW MUCH I'VE LEARNED SINCE THEN. Aren't you proud?? XP

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    2. My little beta reader is growing up... *sniffs and pats your head* XP

      Seriously, though, keep up the good work!! :D

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  4. This is SUPER helpful, THANK YOU. *applauds*

    -Gray Marie
    graymariewrites.blogspot.com

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  5. Very helpful. I'll need to keep this in mind. I'm hoping to call in the betas soon. Well, somewhat soon. I've got to let my Alpha go through it first, then the betas. Plus the tips for if I ever beta read are extremely helpful.
    Awesome post!

    ~Ivie
    iviewrites.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks! OOH CONGRATULATIONS. That's a big step! It's always good to have alphas first though, that's what I did. I'm not /quite/ ready for beta readers, but hopefully soonish. :D

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  6. I NEEDED THIS RIGHT NOW. HOW DID YOU KNOW??

    Okay, seriously--I've never beta read. I've always been a bit afraid to do it for some reason? I guess I just don't feel like I'll do a good job. *shrugs* BUT I'm making myself get over that and will be beta reading for the first time soon! This post is a lifesaver.

    SO THANKS. XD

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    1. REMEMBER? I'M JUST A SUPER GOOD GUESSER. XD

      Wow, really? I think you'll do AWESOME when you beta read, especially since you have a few first drafts under your belt. (That always helps with pretty much EVERYTHING WRITING-RELATED. XP) Are you betaing for Tracey?? I REALLY WANTED TOOO but I'm starting my senior year up and my schedule is crazy so I don't have much time. D:

      YOU'RE WELCOME. XD

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    2. *glances at my snickering Canadian friend*

      Um...I think your super good-guessing skills can help you on this one, Jon. XD

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    3. Mwahahaha I KNEW IT. #calledit You'll do fantastic, Mary! Plus Tracey won't bite you even if you don't do fantastic so it's all good xP

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    4. Or WILL I? *bares teeth menacingly*

      I kid, I kid! I don't think it's possible for you to NOT be fantastic, Mary! And however it goes, I'm just ecstatic to share my story with you.

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  7. OH GOODNESS I'M SO GLAD I'M NOT THE ONLY ONE WHO DOESN'T KNOW HOW TO DO AN EM-DASH! AH! *ahem* Sorry... XD
    Great post. I have yet to beta-read anything, but I'll keep these tips in mind if I ever do! :D
    Oh, and if you're curious as to how the Writer's Conference I attended, check out Abigayle Claire's, and Ivy Rose's blogs. (since I don't have a blog...yet.)
    They've got that all covered. (with pictures too!)

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    1. AAHH YOU REALLY DON'T? *high fives* Maybe once one of us figures it out we'll have to tell the other one how to do it haha. xD I can do it on Word/Scrivener, but not on Google Docs... IDK WHY?? IT'S WEIRD.
      Wait you went to that conference?? I DIDN'T KNOW THAT. Cool!

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    2. Psssst, Megs and Jonathan XD Here's how you use an EM-dash in Google Docs. Insert >> Special Characters, then search "em" or "em-dash." :DDD

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    3. Haha yes. Please do tell if you figure em-dash's out...I'm stumped. XD
      Yep! It was AMAZING. :D

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    4. LILA, YOU'RE MY HERO! XD

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    5. Lila, I've been wondering about that too! Thank you!

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    6. Thanks Lila! Looks like I'm not the only one who was confused about that... xD

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  8. me about LoL: FIRST PROJECT WHOOO
    also me: okay what do I do now
    *many months later* okie, I think I've got a handle on this now, maybe?? (*cough*no)

    YAAAAS GOOGLE DOCS IS AWESOME!!!!

    oh yes, the "maybe do this" I feel like I say that a lot on commenting... XD

    great post!! lotsa good tips : D

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    1. NO YOU WERE SUPER HELPFUL WITH LOL THOUGH. *high fives* You're a good blend of critical comments and fangirling comments, hehe. xD

      SAME.

      I do too? And at first I thought I was like "ahhh I need to say this less" but now I just let it go. xD

      Thanks!

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  9. This was super helpful! I've been thinking about getting alphas and betas for a while now, but haven't had the nerve to do it yet. Will keep this in mind for when I've polished my baby enough to send it out. Thank you so much!

    ~Vera

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    1. Thanks! AHH YOU SHOULD DEFINITELY DO IT THOUGH. Just pick people you trust and people you know can help your story out. :D

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  10. *waves hand around* I agree with this message *nods and gives stamp of approval*

    Oh but speaking of how helpful deadlines are, can you pleeeeeease give me one for LoL because honestly I need it xD I'm so close to the end, but still so far

    I would say this post was helpful to me, but since I knew all this anyway... ;)

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    1. Yesss good I'm glad I have the Hann stamp of approval *high fives* XD

      LOL YOU HAVEN'T FINISHED LOL YET? *dies* I wasn't sure... it /is/ super long though haha. I probably would have set a deadline at the beginning of everything but since I was sending it out on a part by part basis I didn't. (LESSON. LEARNED. XP) Honestly you don't need to stress about finishing it super soon or whatever- I still haven't resolved any of the comments from the later parts because I'm working on draft 3.0 (!!!!) and I'm not sure what exactly I'm keeping/cutting until I get there. So. xP

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    2. LOL no XD I need to but then lots of stuff happened in July and August and then Jane said I need to finish RE so I put aside all other projects. Oh and school xP
      BUT I WILL FINISH IT BY THE END OF SEPTEMBER, regardless of stress ;)

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    3. ALRIGHT THAT SOUNDS GOOD. Good luck then. :D

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  11. This is all great! I agree! I haven't beta read /that/ much. The first time I ever beta read was in May/June? And I discovered. it. is. FUN. Then I helped a friend edit a chapter (actually I was just supposed to give feedback but I had my editor eyes open and noticed all the spelling errors too xD), and she liked it so much and said I should do it for a profession and that I might be a J. K. Rowling and so on xD Not exactly what I'd say about myself, but I DISCOVERED A NEW HOBBY.

    And all your points are so spot on. I agree Google Docs is probably the best - not that I've actually ever used anything else ... Major debate with myself that I've had is the fact vs. opinion. And the suggestions. Because I have a lot of opinions. I'm noticing constantly that I'm not just correcting what's wrong - I'm also trying to improve what's already right. There's a difference between correct and beautiful. (Like, writing everything in simple sentences would be correct, but it wouldn't get many points for style xD) And yet, all my suggestions are purely my opinion and it's so often in MY style. I want to try to do my utter best in beta reading for others, and help them get the most beautiful manuscript possible, but then I feel like I'm critiquing too much what is purely MY OWN OPINION. *shakes head* I need to still figure this out - find balance - talk to all the authors ... I want to help them make their words flow, yet I'm hesitant to be too picky. I'm almost editing them like I edit myself.

    Oops, that was a lot of opinion again xD Anyway. LOVED THIS POST. I was so surprised when I saw this pop up in my email and I was like, "HOW DID I MISS IT ON MY BLOGGER FEED!??"

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    1. Well everyone has to start somewhere! :D I don't think I beta read for my first time until I started a blog... so that probably wasn't until I was 17. (maybe 16 but I don't remember exactly lol) IT IS FUN THOUGH. Plus it helps me become a better self editor, which is always something I need help with LOL.

      Hmm... so at Realm Makers in the editing demo session we talked about that a little, actually. What the lady said was that you have make sure you're not inserting yourself into the author's story. Because not all pieces of prose are meant to be beautiful and flowing- maybe the character's voice is choppy and abrupt. You have to sorta keep some distance between yourself and the story. However, if you're struggling with whether or not to edit something, I'd say a safe bet is to just go ahead and /SUGGEST/ a change. Make sure it's clear that the suggestion it only your opinion though! That way, if the author does think it fits better with their story, they can expound upon it or something. :D

      I LIKE LONG COMMENTS THOUGH. :D Especially when they're thought-provoking. Thanks!

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    2. [Also, do any stalkers have some other thoughts on overediting?]

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    3. *wild stalker appears to leave her thoughts*
      @Jon what you said about making it clear that it's just your /opinion/ is definitely something I go off. It's important to see the whole style of the author and try think in that style so that you can help them improve without changing the style. Their style is their trademark and it shouldn't be changed. If there's something that you personally find oddly phrased you could say "/I/ think this sounds odd because such and such" instead of just "This sounds odd because..etc."
      *shrugs* THAT'S JUST ME THOUGH.

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  12. OH MY GOSH YES TO ALL OF THIS!! The fact that you are the main person who has beta read for who specifies what should be corrected AND uses the suggestions feature has always made me super happy. Jsyk. *applause* Those points were super good.

    I also agree with leaving positive comments for sure! Sometimes I come off as a fangirl instead of a professional critiquer. And sometimes I come off hardcore editor instead :P So finding that nice balance has been fun ...

    YES TO DEADLINES AS WELL. As a beta, I would never finish without deadlines. I have literal proof. And all my betas have done extremely well with extra stressful + ridiculous deadlines from mwa :P

    ALSO I //almost// figured out how to make Google Docs do the em-dash. It works, but only if you do a space after it. So it still won't auto convert when you do it the proper way without a space. Still better than nothing though!! SO go to Google Docs --> Tools --> Preferences. Then in the blanks do REPLACE -- WITH *paste proper em-dash from Word Docs*

    TA-DA! You'll see what I mean about that sorta working if you fiddle with it :D

    Anywho. *tutorial over* Fantastic post! I shall have to share it on social media ;)

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    1. AHH I'M GLAD YOU AGREE. You know you're doing something right when an author agrees with your post. xD Yesss suggestions are my favorites. Let's be real, none of us want to edit teensy little thing like grammar manually when our beta readers could just do that for us. :P

      See I think I need to work more on just being a fan LOL. Because normally in my head I'm like "DUUUDE THIS IS FANTASTIC" but sometime I neglect to mention that.

      SAME. Your deadlines were ridiculous and stressful, I DON'T DISAGREE. But it would have taken me so much longer to read your book(s) without them so THEY WERE GOOD.

      APPARENTLY I need to post about things I DON'T KNOW HOW TO DO on my blog more, then people will just come in and tell me how to whatever I can't figure out. xDDD Thanks!

      EEK YES I SAW ON G+. #famous xP

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  13. Fantastic and very timely post! ;) Google docs is pretty amazing for sharing with betas, though my personal preference for the actual writing/editing is Word. Because em dashes. Among other things. XD

    I always fall back on the sandwich method when I give general feedback at the end of a story: start with something positive, bring up the negative or constructive criticism, and then end on another positive note. Which is basically like what you were saying about leaving praise among your critical comments!

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    1. [Whoops somehow I missed this comment lol *awkwardly slips after replying to all the other comments* xD]

      Thanks! SAME. I... actually rarely use Word? I LOOOVE Scrivener but also idk how to use half of it. I like Word, I just only use it for shorter things. :D

      Ohhh that's a good idea. *nods* I've never given general feedback at the end of a story...? I mean unless a paragraph of general thoughts counts. xD Maybe I should try that!

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  14. AHHH YES. I agree with alllll of this.
    *cough* I also believe I *coughcough* maybe have done the 'this feels awkward' thing and left it at that because I couldn't think of any better way to put it. XD

    ALSO. Em dashes in google docs. About 70% of the time I just copy-paste them in. XD But it /should/ work if you double-dash and then press space. (if not, on the top bar - go to tools>preferences> then put in a '--' on the left hand side, and paste in an em dash from google or something on the right hand side, tick the box and click 'OK') THAT SHOULD HAVE YOU SORTED OUT ON THAT FRONT THOUGH. *fingerguns*

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    1. IM PRETTY SURE I HAVE LITERALLY explained how to do the em-dash to Jon before, in almost the exact same way XD

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    2. Hi, Jane and Hann! Just thought I'd mention perhaps an easier way to do the em-dash in Google Docs! Insert >> Special Characters, then type in "em" or "em-dash." :)

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    3. @Hann YES I THINK YOU HAVE. XD I remember you doing it actually. XP

      @Lila ohh yep that is another way. :D

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    4. OMW HANN YES YOU HAVE. XD I remember that actually? I think it was on a later part of Library of Lies though, meaning I haven't actually seen it yet except for scanning over it when it came into my email. Either that or I was just too caught up in editing to notice it. xD

      Also I love how the comments section is half just people trying to tell me how to do an em-dash :P

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    5. LOL! But, I mean, you were pretty much asking for it... XDDD

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  15. Love this!! Especially helpful since I'll be typing up a (very loose) guideline doc to send for alpha readers soon.

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  16. These are very, very good things to know, especially for those of us who just... sorta... faded... into the background... and didn't finish... I STILL WANNA READ YOUR BOOK AND I LOVE WHAT I READ SO FAR *buries head*

    Honestly, though, I'm really, really sorry (not to mention rather embarrassed) about vanishing like that.

    Something that I've learned from a contest I'm judging is that it's really helpful to have a couple categories in mind when critiquing/beta'ing, like "description" and "emotion" and such, so you can notice when they're done right, or when they're lacking.

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    1. OH MY GOODNESS NO YOU'RE TOTALLY GOOD. Life happens. People get busy. Plus LOL was sort of a HUGE commitment- like hearing someone say "my novel is 104k" doesn't sound too daunting, but then you actually step in to /read/ all 104k and it's like "WHOA WHAT DID I GET MYSELF INTO." xD You're still 100% welcome to read it, but I totally understand having to drop out! DO. NOT. STRESS. ABOUT. IT. IF you do then I will track you down mwahahaha. xP

      Ohhh that's a really good idea? I've never even thought of that before... maybe you should do your own post about beta reading. :P

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  17. YES a deadline will definitely save you at LEAST 27 hours. Because if I'm beta-reading (or doing anything basically), I'm going to leave it until two days before the deadline. If there's no deadline... I do it two days before never. (Or when the guilt is completely overwhelming.)
    Jem Jones

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  18. Excellent post! I appreciate you pointed out the need for positive comments. It's important to let the writer know what they're doing well- when the theme shines, when something's eloquently written, when a sentence makes me laugh, etc. It's good to know what to change, but also good to know what to keep.

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    1. Thanks! YEESS I TOTALLY AGREE. Otherwise it's easy to just feel like you have to dump /everything/ when there's definitely some things you should keep. *nods*

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  19. VERY USEFUL. I am going to be entering the beta readers stage of my latest book and I need all the advice I can get. XD

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  20. Hey, Jon! I've been stalking your blog for QUITE SOME TIME, and I thought I'd make my presence known :D Your blog is awesome (you're so funny that I can't even... XD) and THIS POST. I've beta read before, but not much, and this is sooooo helpful!!! You have some great points here :D

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    1. Hey there! THAT'S SUPER COOL. I love meeting my stalkers hahaha. I'm super glad you enjoy my blog and found this post helpful! :D

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  21. I should be beta reading but I haven't really beta read this blogger's books for like two months and I'm still on the first chapter. I'M NOT A BAD PERSON I PROMISEE!

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    1. GRACE. Shoo, what are you doing online?? GO BETA READ. :P :P

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  22. This was a great post! I tried beta reading for one of my online friends, but unfortunately it was a super busy time for me so I didn't get to finish it... It was pretty fun, though while I was able to do it! :) I'm just nervous about what it'll be like when I need beta readers of my own! O_O That shouldn't be for a long time though... #procrastinator XD
    ~Jaclynn~

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    1. Thanks! Aw yeah that happens sometimes. *nods* You'll do great with your own beta readers, trust me: IT'S NOT THAT SCARY. Pick people you trust to tell you what they honestly think and it will be awesome. :D

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  23. This was really good, thanks for posting! I've beta-read twice (and hopefully will soon again), and I'm hoping to share my upcoming stories with more people, so I'll keep this in mind!

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    1. Thanks for reading! That's awesome to have that experience under your belt. *nods* Especially since you know exactly what you're doing now that you're sharing your own stories. :D

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    2. EXACTLY what I'm doing. Of course I do! *nervous laugh* Am I the only writer relying mostly on instincts and the sporadic success of just "winging it"??

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  24. This is so fantastic! Beta-ing is a lot of fun, but there are definitely some important things to keep in mind along with it. I SO agree with all of your points! Great post, Jonathan!

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    1. Thanks! Yesss I agree it is so much fun- especially for Abi. It's just super cool because when you're done the book gets published and it's like "HA I READ THIS /BEFORE/ IT WAS PUBLISHED." xD

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  25. NOOOO NOT GOOGLE DOCS xD My computer explodes no matter how long they are and then I don't have the option of deleting some of my silly meaningless comments before sending the doc back. BUT that's just my opinion, not a fact. ;)

    I think point #3 is my favorite. I always try to balance my feedback as equally as I can with strengths and sections for improvement.

    AWESOME POST. Beta reading is literally one of my favorite things to do!

    audrey caylin

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    1. YESS GOOGLE DOCS. XD Ah well same, sometimes the docs can be a little bit slow running too. *nods* But you actually can delete comments! The only problem is that unless you delete them right away everyone sees them. :P

      Definitely! Balanced feedback is super important for sure.

      THANKS. :D

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  26. Heh. I'm nowhere NEAR being ready for beta-readers, but this will be useful when I am. *bookmarks post*

    Also... https://www.leonpaternoster.com/2011/08/adding-em-dashes-to-google-docs/ xD You're welcome.

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    1. YOU'LL GET THERE THOUGH. And then you'll be like "Hey didn't Jonathan write a post about this...?" and you'll look in your bookmarks and wa-la. There you have it. xD

      LOL thanks! :D Everyone is so helpful haha

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    2. love this post! I especially love Google Docs :). I haven't had the courage yet to have other people read my stories.....but one day I'll use this post when I do. :)
      Thank you! :)

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    3. oops, I just realized I commented as a reply.... haha :)

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    4. Thanks! Yesss Google Docs is the best. :D Good luck when you get there!

      [hahaha no worries- when I first started blogging I'd often forget to use the reply button xD]

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  27. Now I know what beta reading is 😊. You are doing a great job with your writing, Jonathan. Keep up the good work. ❤️Mom

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  28. OMW I NEEDED THIS!! I am currently alpha reading for a friend and getting my novel ready to give to alpha readers this November.

    Whenever I alpha or beta read for someone, I do try to give positive comments along with the negative. Most of the time I'm just like, "Wow, this is amazing!" but forget to say that.

    When I first started beta reading, I had a hard time thinking of nicer ways to make suggestions. And then I saw some of your comments when I beta read Andora's Folly, and I was like, "Hey, this sounds soo much nicer." I now say "maybe try this". ;)

    I definitely agree with all of this post. Thank you for sharing! :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. COOOOL. :D That's so awesome that you're getting ready for alphas! My suggestion would be to maybe wait until after November though? Because November=NaNo and everyone's going to be swamped with that. xD

      Well even just something vague like that is still super encouraging. :D Plus comments like those only take a few seconds to leave, so it's a win-win.

      Aw lol well thanks! I'm glad you found some of my comments helpful then. xD

      Thanks for reading!

      Delete
  29. I agree 100% on the Google Docs thing. I discovered it this last year and will NEVER go back.

    Commenting as part of my challenge: rebekahdevall.wordpress.com/challenge/

    ReplyDelete

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