Beta Readers by Jacqui Jacoby #Giveaway

This week author Jacqui Jacoby talks about Beta Readers. 

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Over to Jacqui...

For me a beta reader is the step between when I type ‘the end’ on the final first draft and the draft I send to the editor, after I entered in the beta’s comments.  And for me, they are really just readers who might enjoy the story and can tell me that “this is where we need more explanation” or “I don’t like what the heroine said here.”  For them, it’s a ride through a story no one else has seen and a dedication in the published version.

Where I find them? I ask friends, people I trust. I get recommendations from people in the industry who might know someone. I use social media—Twitter, Facebook--an old high school alumni site is great.

No.  I have to agree with what they said.  In a recent read a favorite beta of mine had four points she didn’t like.  I took them apart in my mind, from my point of view, and I simply didn’t agree with three of them.  I found a third reader and I am waiting to see what they said. I am not so stubborn to say "She's wrong." I will listen, but I do want one more point of view before I make changes.

I usually just use two and I will simply read their comments, see what I agree with, see what I do not. If there is one point that is really standing out, I will examine that in detail. In the above case, I did get a third reader as the points were so severe.

I have no problem with criticism.  Tell me you don’t like it and that’s fine. My books are not for everyone and that is not a personal insult. You’re not required to like what I type.  If you're beta-ing, please explain why and I will tell you what I think.

I can critique.  No problem.  I don’t usually beta, though, due to my production schedule through 2017.

I will make a list of points that I was concerned of things I would like them to look for.  Did I capitalize “dad” right, was the heroine too bitchy in that one scene? Too much sex?  Not enough?

Beta’s are a new addition to my repertoire of people I work with and I find them invaluable. I try to reward each one with something that might make them smile: a bottle of wine for one, an Amazon card for another. It’s what they like, though it generally isn’t enough to really reward their effort.  I have one girl I am working with right now, all she wants is a bowl of popcorn and a Cary Grant movie with me.

And they get their name in the book so I can say thank you to getting the next book onto the shelf.

Jacqui Jacoby's latest release:    Bystander
Bystander is the story of Beth Hardwick, reader on the Snap Shots set in Hollywood, California.  Just out of a bad relationship with Miles Criswell, she thought he would disappear and she could move on.  Miles had serious other plans. It took the involvement of her boss, former spot light hot shot and current Snap Shot producer to step in and rescue her. Sean, world famous for his dating as well as his movies has two passions in his life: his son and his cats. And the way the cats boss him around, you would think they ruled the world.
Buy Links:

Goodreads Giveaway

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Bystander by Jacqui Jacoby


by Jacqui Jacoby

Giveaway ends December 31, 2015.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway


  1. Beta Readers are wonderful.
    This book sounds intriguing. Wishing you many sales.

  2. I've been a Beta reader twice and I loved it especially when it's a favorite author or a book I really liked. I had to reread some parts because I was like, Oh I'm supposed to be looking for stuff while reading too. lol

  3. Beta readers are great, but you do have to remember that reading is subjective and betas can have very different reactions to the same book.

  4. Beta readers are invaluable! I love mine :) But it is important to know how your relationship works with them to make the most of what you do together.

  5. I have a bunch of CPs, but choosing betas is hard. I try to get 5-6 betas, and I also sometimes don't agree with what they say, but if a number of them agree, I'll listen. Thanks for the inside story of your betas and books! Wishing you & eveyone a Happy New Year!

  6. I enjoyed reading about beta readers. I haven't used beta readers exactly, but have gotten feedback from people. They definitely sound like they can be helpful and give you things to think about before publishing. :)

    Happy New Year!

  7. I've never heard of Beta readers.. I think it would be both tough and interesting .... ♡

    Happy New Year xox

  8. I love beta readers. Usually , what my go-to beta reader points out are good things that make sense for me to change after I consider what she says. But having a couple more beta readers is a goid thing, and listening to your gut is important.

  9. I've had the honor of beta reading for numerous writers, and have thoroughly enjoyed it. I also just finished reading "Bystander," and will be posting reviews asap. It's a good, and very fast, read.

  10. I like Cary Grant and popcorn. Betas are vital, but you have to know when to listen and when to stay true to your story. It's a fine line.

    Happy New Year.

  11. Sometimes we learn more from those negative comments than the positive--but they can definitely sink your spirit.

  12. Having extra eyes on a story is crucial, and it's always best to have more than one person give feedback so you can decide what advice to take or leave more easily.

  13. I gather information from several beta readers and definitely use things they all agree on and with the other stuff I pick and choose what's the best fit for my project.

  14. It is hard to take criticism, but always better sooner than later. Love the book cover! Happy New Year!


  15. I adore beta readers, and I agree with getting multiple responses when the suggestions are dubious. No story should go into the world without having been through a good number of hands.

  16. Beta readers can be really useful - especially if they have the same comments. It's important to have others read your work before sending it out.


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