August 6, 2012

Q+A: Manuscripts and Beta Readers

» Ask Me Anything!

Emily asked: How polished should a manuscript be before you send it to beta readers?

As I'm sure you already know because you guys are pretty darn awesome, many of these questions are the sort where the answers change depending on who you ask. Writing advice, like writing itself, is subjective. Take what you like, what you agree with, and discard everything else ♥

For me, I bring in the beta readers after my critique partners have taken their axes to it, and I've finished revisions based on their feedback.

In fandom, betas were synonymous with critique partners so it took a while for me to figure out that there is somewhat of a difference (there is, right? *cough*) between the two. From what I've come to understand, CPs go after just about anything (and I love that they do!), while most beta readers will look at the big picture, the final product, and pick out the inconsistencies and poorly paced areas.

Of course, that changes as well depending on the people involved.

Actually, you know what? IGNORE EVERYTHING I JUST WROTE.

How polished a manuscript should be before sending it to your beta readers should be established between you and your beta readers. I'm pretty sure it changes with each and every writer/beta reader, so... find out what works for you, and go with that :)


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