Showing posts from July, 2011

Confessions of a Beta: Jenna

Today I'm handing the ost over to one of my Beta readers, Jenna. A few of these will be popping up shortly.


I am a beta reader. As far as I understand, that means I am not in the publishing industry. I really like books. I have a grasp of spelling and grammar. I am very opinionated. I deeply want to help. All of that seems to add up to something my friend can use in her writing life. There are some downsides, like having confusing dreams based off of her half-written books, or developing crushes on quasi-villains, or getting in trouble for not being able to remember the names of secondary characters in any one of the 4-6 books in progress at any given time what is my problem why don't I care?

I love reading a book in progress, but it does get confusing. For example: authorfriend had begun a story in which she fiddled with point-of-view. She had written several chapters, then stalled out and shelved it. A few months later she brought it back out to rework it, which she th…

Why I Write Queries Early & Often

Queries are the bane of every unpublished author I’ve ever had the pleasure of speaking with. They hate them. And I totally understand why. I hated them too. I loathed them so much I barely gave them a though for my first 3 novels – which is probably the reason I didn’t get a single partial request.

But as of late I’ve learned to embrace the query – and now it’s just those blasted synopses I hate (kidding).

When I have a WIP I can usually tell by page 5 if it’s going to be a novel I’m going to take the time to finish. So, when I make it to the 10,000-word mark, I write that dreaded query.

What results is never pretty. But it’s the bare bones what-this-book-starts-with query.

I write that WIP’s query probably five times before I’m done with the novel and then I probably write it another 3-6 times while in revisions. Then I send what I’ve got off to other people so they can tell me where I’ve made something nonsensical – because as an author I’m too close to the story and invariably…