Anyone interested in being reviewing partners?

May 7, 2016
Is anyone interested in connecting off the forums to review each other's work? I'm thinking the Critique Section is great, but not so much for complete stories. I'm after that kind of feedback from readers / writers who I don't know personally for longer pieces and complete stories, perhaps even novels.

Sorry if this comes out the wrong way, but hopefully I was clear enough :confused:. I think what I'm asking about is a common enough request, but I didn't find a thread or section about it? If there is one, I'd be grateful to be pointed in its direction.

If you are interested in partnering, please either PM me or reply below; my preferences would be for tech / thriller / space stories - I'm not so bothered about completely invented milieu - but I'll try anything that's based in reality.

I'm thinking the Critique Section is great, but not so much for complete stories.

I promise you, if you put a piece up for Critique, you'll get critical feedback on it - and lessons of which you can apply through the book.

As for beta readers - really this is something people organise in private.

As a general pointer, people will want to know something about you first - not least through your interactions in the forum - and also see something of the standard of your work in Critiques.
There's not a dedicated section where we can ask for beta readers or writing partners, so putting the request here was fine.

As Brian says, although other members are very willing to help, beta reading is something of a commitment, so it's unlikely you'll get many people jumping into help until they've seen something of your writing in Critiques, and that will include how you respond to comments. The fact you've already helped others by critiquing is a plus, though, as it means they can see how you yourself critique, so they can judge whether you would fit in with them. (I know of one person who was burned by entering into an arrangement with another member, spent a considerable time helping the other person, but received negligible help in return.) In addition, you will surely want to know about the work and critiquing ability of those who might volunteer to help you -- you want someone who is writing to your own or slightly above your standard, and who is insightful enough to provide real help.

Quite a number of us are involved in Writing Groups with other members off-Chrons, both in real life meetings and online groups, but most, if not all, of those groups have arisen after we've got to know the other members here first for a few months or longer.

So my advice is to get stuck in, give a few more critiques, join in discussions and get to know people, and when you hit 30 posts put something up in Critiques yourself, see what response you get, and take it from there.
Thanks Brian, Judge. I wasn't sure how these things worked themselves out, especially when you're looking for help with longer pieces of work, and you've explained that nicely. You make some good points about finding people you want to work with too. And I do believe people will give feedback when I post something for review :)

Working on the 30 posts, not far to go now.

It's good that you are asking though; because everyone needs extra eyes to look. I think after 100 post you can also leave larger chunks in the Writer's Group and get more advice targeted to your own request.

I really wish someone had done that recently as they published a 400 page book that I've read twice now and I have 500 notes and bookmarks of which there are at least 150 serious problems. I can't earnestly review the book without highlighting those difficulties and that means I probably won't; which is a shame because it has a neat plot and interesting characters; but it needs a serious amount of editing.
I have 500 notes and bookmarks

Thanks; I believe it can be a real commitment in time and effort. I've only done a full novel review for someone else once and it must have come to that kind of level of effort. You've got to know you have the time and mental energy to commit to that on someone else's behalf regardless (or perhaps because) of how well you know them.

Is the Writers Group on Chrons? For when the time comes, of course :)

Yes, the Writing Group is here, but it's only available -- only visible! -- to those with over 100 posts.

It would certainly be useful for the short stories you mentioned, provided they're not too long (putting the whole of a short up there shouldn't count as publication since it's not visible to the general public) and for other things which aren't always appropriate for Critiques for one reason or another, eg synopses before submitting to agents. It's also handy for longer extracts of a chapter or two of a full novel, rather than the limited 1500 words of Critiques, so readers can get a bigger picture. The disadvantage of it, though, is that the longer the piece, the harder it is to attract readers who have the time/energy/wherewithal to comment, so by and large a thread there will receive less feedback than one in Critiques.

When Brian set it up, WG was intended for those who had reached a certain standard of writing, where the work had already been polished to a high degree and was ready to be submitted to agents. There's no admission panel, though, so it's up to the individual member to decide if his/her work meets the criteria.
Thanks, Judge, that's clear. Sounds a good idea with reasonable guidelines for submissions.

You're quite cunning on these forums, with all these targets for people to keep aiming at...:sneaky: What do you get at 10 K posts?

On a serious note, though, the targets seem to work, you've got a lot of engagement here.

At 10k posts, you have the reward of being hopelessly addicted to the Chrons. In fact many get that reward beforehand.

I got it at about 10 :(

Many of us do beta for others, but we mostly got to know each other on the crits board first. That way I know they won't strop when I tell them they're not close enough to their characters. :D
If you're talking about review swaps then Amazon will most likely delete them if you post them there. Anywhere else is probably fine though :)

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