Getting the most from beta readers - Page 2

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  1. #11
    I have my wife read it, and if she's too complimentary I'll have a writer friend read it; one who is an asshole -- but an honest asshole.

  2. #12
    Member Megan Pearson's Avatar
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    Dec 2018
    In your garden. Prefer lantana but star flowers and sea holly will do.
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    Quote Originally Posted by epimetheus View Post
    I've seen that some people send out structured questionnaires
    You know, Orson Scott Card had a beta reader feedback sheet I found useful. It was open-ended yet structured enough to elicit helpful comments from non-writerly friends and family by guiding them past the knee-jerk "I liked it" response. (Why did you like it? "I dunno. But I liked it!" *Smile*.)

    The most useful critique I have have ever received was from somebody who I know does not hold my point of view yet patiently took the time to handwrite a question to me in VERY large letters across the bottom of the more formal letter he wrote in critique. This single comment has been worth its weight in gold. It not only shaped my final draft but has (& will continue to) profoundly influence everything I think I will ever write. If you get a gem of a reviewer like that, buy them a year's worth of Starbucks cards or something--just, don't let them go!!! A reviewer like that is irreplaceable.
    "A ship in the harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for."
    ~ John A. Shedd

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