Authors Answer 37 – Beta Readers

Beta readers – those people you get to read your book before your book is published. Here’s what authors think of using such people.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

Authors rarely work alone. They usually have professionals doing editing, book cover, and so on. However, before the book is published, many authors like to get help from other sources, unpaid sources.

320px-Modern-ftn-pen-cursiveQuestion 37: Do you use beta readers? How many?

Allen Tiffany

I absolutely use beta readers! But let me share my definition of “beta readers” so I can answer this clearly. I think of beta readers as someone who will read a manuscript “cover to cover” and provide at least as much feedback on the story as they do on grammar, word choice, paragraph structure, etc. Often – for better and worse — betas are not writers.

One thing about betas that we must be attentive to is that they are generally hard to find, and they don’t want to be asked to repeatedly read works in progress, so you usually only get to use them once per…

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