I’m looking for beta readers.

Yes, I know I said that I was done writing the book – and I am! – and that I had finished all the polishing – and I have! – but the thing is, as someone I can’t be bothered to look up said, books are never finished, only abandoned.

I know I’m at the agent-getting part of this process, and I really am working on it (more later on that), but in the meantime, it would be helpful to me if I had some feedback.

There are two main reasons for this.

First, if (when) I get rejected a zillion times, I may end up starting from scratch or rewriting this book.  In that case, the more information on what may have gone wrong, the better.  I’d really like to have that information even if I disagree with it right now – I may love that maritime reference right now, but after say, 30 rejections, maybe I’ll go through the feedback, see that everyone else hated it and say “Hm.  Maybe this should go.”

Second, if I get encouraging feedback, it will help me know that, even after a zillion rejections, SOMEONE had a nice time reading my book.  That seems worthwhile as well.

Also, there’s a good chance someone could find that typo or worse, plot hole, that really messes with the book…and I could fix it before sending it out.  That could be downright lifesaving as far as I’m concerned.

Of course, the problem with beta readers is finding the right ones.  I’ve read that you want at least two – both people that you trust.  One who will tell you that you’re wonderful and they’re so proud of you.  And another who says, hmm, maybe fix that?

That sounds really good.  But, (surely unlike any other writer) I have very thin skin, really.  I assume.  Which is why, of the people that I trust, none of them apparently want to be the one who says bad things.  Either I’m the best writer in the world (well I mean, obviously) or perhaps I have too nice of friends.

I recognize that I am wishing for something I may quickly regret.  Maybe I won’t be able to take criticism well at all.

I’m going to ask for it anyway though.  Because I could just be blinded and unable to see that all I write is trash.  (Yup, that escalated quickly.)

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