Episode 5 of Mark Coker’s Apple Podcasts is about working with beta readers – A very important part of every writer’s process. Or it should be.
In this episode you’ll learn how to recruit beta readers, how to craft your questionnaire to collect the right feedback, and you’ll learn time-saving strategies to complete the round with minimal hassle.
Oh, the humanity: Am I the only writer who fears he’s lost the magic every time he sits down at a keyboard? Ah, but then what made me think I had any magic to begin with? Writers wear two colognes, “l’insecurite” and “l’arrogance,” and never have to purchase either one–they’re pheromones. “Writers rush in where […]
Belinda Pollard has laid out the process and time commitment very well for an editor such as myself, along with the angst of having to pay for one myself, as a writer.
But it’s a very necessary part of the process if you’re serious about being taken seriously as a writer.
My daughter – an avid reader and very good student – recently agree to read a book for an author that contacted me for a review (I didn’t have time but my daughter did). My daughter has come up with a very long list of things this author missed including words misspelled and a error in a reference to the battle of Troy. This author said she did an edit swap with a fellow writer, which obviously didn’t cost her anything except her reputation as a writer. A pretty high cost in my book (pun intended). Unfortunately, she published the book before she asked for reviews. Hopefully not many people have seen it yet because it needs a lot of work, work an editor would have picked up on before potential readers had seen it.
I know it’s an expense, but it is one of those things that you get what you pay for.
Good post! Explains a confusing concept. As someone who does both for a living, it’s distressing to see the word proofreading use for copy editing. They are similar in some respects but not the same. Thanks Catherine!
Here is a little piece that you don’t hear much about in writing – your voice.
What is “your voice?” you may ask.
Well, those words are used to describe the style of your writing, the little quirks, sayings, grammar style that you have that is different (or maybe similar) to other writers.
Some “voices” are very distinctive: Ray Bradbury, Kurt Vonnegut are two authors that come to my mind.
Now, just because you use a particular voice in one story, you can’t use a different voice in a new story, but there is probably one style that you are most comfortable writing in – your style.
Check out what Joe Bunting and Ted Dekker say about finding your voice.
p.s. I small but important thing to remember – if you have a book you want someone to edit. If you have a particular thing (short sentences, capital letters where there might not normally be…), let you editor know ahead of time. It will save you the aggravation of changing back all those things they thought was grammatically incorrect but was really just your style/voice. It will also save the editor time. A win-win!
Did you know that editors use style guides when editing a piece of work. What they are editing and who they are editing for can both determine what style guide they will use. I use the Chicago Manual of Style – commonly used for fiction – and the AP (Associated Press) Style Guide – commonly used for news print and web news. Companies often create their own style guides so that all the copy that leaves a particular company looks the same and so the staff don’t throw things at each other over punctuation and grammar arguments. (Really, it could happen!)
Andrew Doty and Amy Lorenti will give you some inside poop on style guides, if really want to know.
As an editor, Mark’s style guide idea is a good one, but I don’t think I’d need all the information he asks for. I do like knowing what writing rules the writer has broken so I don’t waste time correcting something the writer wanted there in the first place. I don’t know how many people told me to change cliches in my book Rosebloom. I like cliches, sometime, and I left them in there on purpose.
What he didn’t mention was telling the editor the intended audience for the book. The language and references can be quite different for a piece depending on the audience.