Visiting a Beta-Reader

One of my beta-readers, DeLynn, is a longtime family friend.

Kyle Pratt with DeLynn

Life has taken her away from the area where I live; however, when she came back, to visit family and friends over the 4th of July, we visited.

Most of the time was taken up with reminiscing, eating and fun, but I also had to discuss some business. She was previously a beta-reader for Through Many Fires and has volunteered to do the same for A Time to Endure.

Some of you may be wondering, “What is a beta-reader?” Wikipedia defines it as, “a non-professional reader who reads a written work, generally fiction, with the intent of looking over the material to find and improve elements such as grammar and spelling….”

Every author I know has a group of these precious individuals. My beta-readers receive a digital copy of the manuscript before it is released and, using the Microsoft Word track changes function, mark grammar, spelling and continuity errors. They need to be quick readers (2 – 3 weeks to read a book) and a bit of a grammar Nazi. In return they get a signed first edition of the book they read and my gratitude.

At one point, DeLynn mentioned she would like to have her name used for a “nice character” in A Time to Endure. I obliged. Such a sweet character, too bad she dies horribly in the last chapter. (Just kidding, DeLynn!)

My beta-readers will soon be getting chapters of A Time to Endure to read. I’m always looking for a few more readers. If you’re interested in joining the cadre of beta-readers use the contact page on my website to let me know.