Why are Beta-Readers special?

icon-with-question-mark-hi

The beta-reader is the most important card in your editing arsenal.

Yes. You read correctly. While the editor can weed out typos and suggest changes in the storyline to fill plot holes, the beta-reader does what must be done.

He/She locates the minor glitches that can derail a great book. I know not everyone goes hunting for typos but grammar Nazis are out there.

Almost always, these people work for free, and their efforts go largely unnoticed by the average reader.

Most authors I know acknowledge their beta-readers, and they should. If you ask me there should be a day dedicated to these tireless folks.

So if you’re a writer, and have beta-readers, do ’em a favor.

Tell them how much you love them.

T.A. UNER is the Author of various published novels and short stories. Please follow him on LeopardKingSaga.com, where he blogs about writing, publishing, and life. By subscribing to his blog posts you’ll have them delivered directly to your e-mail inbox. Sorry! Spam not included.

Beta-reading stage complete for GUNS AND DOGS

1Twitter Cover-Coming Soon 1500x500

At last my beta-readers have submitted their edits and I am ready to get them to my formatter for a final round of edits. After that, a final editing pass by my editor should complete GUNS AND DOGS. 

Like any book being prepared for the market, this has been a laborious, yet fulfilling process. My greatest wish is to see it bring enjoyment to the many young adult fans out there. After all, this is the book YOU voted for me to write.

Do I really need an editor?

Gorilla_Scratching_Head

Some new writers who are entering the ever-expanding self-publishing arena may try and cut corners. Thinking they don’t need an editor. Well, having faced this dilemma myself when I was a newbie I’m here to tell you this:

Don’t even think about it!

A good editor, in addition to fixing grammar,punctuation and spelling mistakes, can also help make your story better by finding plot holes. Notice how I said good editor. There are a lot of bad editors out there, and when you’re first getting started it may be difficult to tell the difference between a keeper and someone who isn’t pulling their weight.

I’ve had this issue, and it took me years before I found an ideal editor. Experience is the best teacher, and after a few bad experiences it becomes easier to weed out the bad editors.

So don’t skip out on finding a good editor, beta-readers are fine, but should be used in addition to a solid editor.

Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

T.A. UNER is the Author of various novels and short stories. Please be sure to follow him on LeopardKingSaga.com, where he blogs about writing, self-publishing, and life. Please subscribe to his blog posts and have them delivered directly to your e-mail inbox. He will dance on his hands if you do.

Turning Ordinary tasks into Extraordinary experiences

cropped-ver2-2twitter-cover-1500x5002.jpg

Now that editing has picked up on GUNS AND DOGS I wanted to talk about having fun. What type of fun you may ask?

Some newbie writers I’ve spoken with have complained of writing and editing as tedious due to time constraints or Writer’s Block, an ailment I really cannot relate to since it’s a self-imposed predicament I don’t subscribe to. “So why do you write?” I ask these people. “Did you think it would be all fun and games? I mean, if you’re doing this for money or for fame, you’re in the wrong line of work.”

I think the best mindset to have when writing, or doing anything that’s a labor of love is to take it for face value. Enjoy the experience as your journey toward a better self, and, make the process the fun by not tying yourself up with the end result, because even if the book/project doesn’t turn out how you expected, you’ll have spent your time on a worthwhile endeavor. You!

Remember: turn ordinary tasks into extraordinary experiences. And watch your work soar like an Eagle.

T.A. UNER is the Author of various novels and short stories. Please be sure to follow him on LeopardKingSaga.com, where he blogs regularly about writing and self-improvement. You can also subscribe to his blog posts and have them delivered directly to your e-mail inbox. If you do this he will dance on his hands.

Writers: How to respect your readers

Writing

Are you a writer? You are? Great! Then I’ve got news for you…

Do you edit your work? Or hire an editor instead? If you do one or both then listen up. You still need to have your work proofread. Most writers undervalue this important step in publishing; do so at your own peril, because the results can be harmful to your literary reputation.

Most writers think that after the editing process, their work is done and press the publish button in a mad dash to get their work out on the market. Well, if you’re skipping the proofreading phase, then you’re hurting yourself more than you know.

Trust me, it is in your best interests to find a proofreader…or two. Editors are human too, and they miss errors in manuscripts. It’s not because they’re not doing their job, but not every mistake will be caught. That’s why you need as many fresh pairs of eyes you can find to help you weed out the typos, misspelled words and punctuation issues.

Listen, readers plunk down their hard-earned money to buy books, and the last thing they want is to get bogged down with manuscript errors. It hurts the reading experience, and also the writer’s reputation.

So, if you don’t respect your readers’ time, efforts, and money, then why should they respect your reputation? The last thing you want is a negative review based on your manuscript’s grammatical/punctuation shortcomings. Will you still get bad reviews? Sure. Every writer does, it’s part of the writing business. But no writer should get bad reviews because of typos, misplaced commas, or grammatical snafus. That’s just unacceptable.

So do yourself and your reader a favor, put a little extra time into the post-editing stages of your manuscript.

Your readers will thank you for it.

T.A. UNER is the Author of various novels and short stories. Please be sure to follow him on LeopardKingSaga.com, where he blogs 4-5 times a week about writing, self-publishing, and sales & marketing, or just plain nonsense. Please subscribe to his blog posts and have them delivered directly to your e-mail inbox. He will be grateful and dance on his hands if you do.