Are you in the market for a Beta Reader? Let’s discuss terms.
Good morning! When a writer and new author asked me to be a beta reader for her memoir recently, first of all I was honored and second of all, I wondered what the heck had I gotten myself into for agreeing to do such an important task.
Needless to say, the experience was a win/win for both parties. A Beta Reader is a person who brings a clear set of eyes to the manuscript to look for typos, grammatical errors, confusion, cohesive mishaps and overall reader likability , before the author sends it off to an editor for final proofing, or places it in the hands of a publisher.
My experience led me to read a great slice of authentic storytelling, offer my unbiased opinion and help out a colleague who needed an honest evaluation of her memoir.
As a book reviewer with over a decade of writing reviews under my belt, I didn’t feel like l was heading for uncharted waters, however, the temptation to avoid book reviewer “critique” mode was hard to suppress. Luckily for me, the author didn’t chastise me for suggesting areas where she might want to tweak a phrase or two:)
Anyone can read a finished manuscript to give honest feedback to its author. Your family members and friends might not be your best choices as they most likely wouldn’t want to hurt your feelings. However, other writers, colleagues and people from your online connections would make good beta readers. Becoming a Beta Reader can also be a lucrative career move for the savvy freelance writer.
What are your thoughts on beta readers and would you recommend this route for authors with completed manuscripts, before publication? If you have served in this capacity, feel free to share your experiences with us.