Have you ever used beta readers for a writing project?
For my first novel, Serpents Underfoot, I did not use beta readers. I did the editing myself with a great deal of help from my mother. Neither of us was a professional editor.
Needless to say, it took several content uploads before I had eliminated all of the typos, etc. And, I have to thank several of my early readers for pointing some of them out to me. I think Serpents Underfoot is in pretty good shape now, but you never know, there might be one more typo lurking in the shadows, ready to spring out on some poor unsuspecting reader!
Even as short as Adirondack Bear Tales is (only fifty pages or so), it took two rounds to get it to what I hope is now a typo-free state!
For Montagnard (the sequel), I am doing something new
I have read and re-read the draft of Montagnard several times. I have run through Microsoft Spellcheck and Grammarly several times as well. Unfortunately, I am sure there are still a few typos, punctuation errors, homonyms and homophones, and probably even too many adverbs.
So, sending a copy out to five beta readers is a bit intimidating. While these are readers whose opinions I respect, I certainly don’t want them to think, “Egad! How’d he miss this!”
On the bright side, I am hoping that if there are any plot holes, sections of the story that are confusing, or parts that simply suck, these five individuals will let me know. And the end result will be a much better novel … and a sequel to Serpents Underfoot.
Then the final step …
I figure that once I have gone through all the observations and edits suggested by my beta readers, I will be ready to send the manuscript to my editor for its final edit. When she is through with it, it will surely be ready to publish.
And, while all this work is being done, I should have time for some pre-release marketing, etc., as well as getting started on my next book project, a story of family, love, and sacrifice during World War II.
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