You Asked: What the Heck is a Beta Reader? Do I Need One?

If you’ve never worked with a beta reader you’re missing a great experience! Doing a ‘beta exchange” is another option where you read each others’ manuscript. I’ve received valuable feedback from my beta readers and enjoyed being a part of the creative process for other authors. If you have an outstanding beta reader they can even help find typos and other goofs which saves on editing. This is a great article with more detail.


Beta ReaderWelcome to another,  You Asked, the Experts Answer, segment.  This week’s question is: What are Beta Readers and do I need one?

A Beta Reader is someone who reads your manuscript before you release it and provides feedback.

Similar to technology companies who release software updates to Beta Testers for the purpose of identifying any bugs before releasing the software to everyone.

A Beta Reader does the same sort of thing for you. It’s a test run of your manuscript.

Is it the Same as a Critique?

No. Critiques, are more in-depth and focused on grammar, plot holes, and the mechanics of writing.

A Beta Reader focuses on reading your manuscript. Feedback received includes their overall impression and any glaring mistakes. They will also provide a review after the release of your book.

Do I Need One?

Based on what publishers and other experts say, yes. For those who choose…

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