Yes, I’m a b***h

I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about who I want to be in the “online writers’ (writer’s?) community. I have felt like I have to be:

1) Cutesy – have adorable things to discuss like if other animals breathe fire?

2) Non-confrontational. Every view ever is valid! If it’s terrible it’s just “imaginative” and unique!

3) post about nothing! Because the blogger guides say to “post on a consistent schedule”. Doesn’t matter if you have anything to say! As long as you post every Monday/Wednesday/Friday!

And the BIG ONE

4) Get a Beta reader/get feedback.  Just get it, you, the goddess-like sappho-talented author don’t have to actually DO anything with the feedback.

Yes, you are the author and you make the ultimate choice (from a self publishing POV) on what your text looks like.  FINE. But don’t ask me to spend months reading your book only to tell me that you’ll only take my opinion into consideration if your other 15 Betas agree with me. That is such Bull Shit, and such ego protection that it makes me want to never work with you again.

My opinion is mine. As a Beta it has weight, or it should, or you wouldn’t ask me to do it.  If you’re trying to find a confluence of Beta opinion you are doing it to feed your own ego.

“Oh, not all nine of my beta readers agree that this passage is SHIT, therefore it must be AWESOME!!” No.  The others just don’t want to tell you that part SUCKS.

I’m not reviewing to commit to a whole.  You don’t have to take any of my feedback.  That’s fine.  But you do need to consider  it individually, on it’s own merit,  like I did your draft.

If you’re not going to bother to consider my feedback unless it agrees with someone else, you are a fraud.  You don’t want feedback, you want to say you sought it. Totally different things.

Do not waste my time.

 

3 thoughts on “Yes, I’m a b***h”

  1. I totally agree that no one should ask anyone to be a Beta Reader if they’re not going to consider what is said very, very carefully.

    That said, if, in the end, they decide to go with something else, it isn’t a slap in the face. It’s a decision that they likely spent a fair amount of time forming based on what each Beta Reader (and if they’re doing their job, there will be more than one) said and what feels true to the story and themselves.

    In my experience from the other end, every Beta Reader’s opinion is carefully considered. Just because I ultimately went with something other than what, say, Beta Reader A mentioned doesn’t mean I didn’t think carefully about what Beta Reader A said. It isn’t necessarily if the other Beta Readers agree (though, if other Beta Readers DO agree on a problem, that’s a signal that something is very definitely wrong and if the author doesn’t think so, that’s when you know they have an ego problem).

    It’s more about what feels right and true to the author and the story. And what must the author do if something Beta Reader A loathed was something Beta Reader B absolutely adored? If not instituting a Beta Reader’s opinion makes them a fraud, whose opinion shall they chose? There’s no way to win!

    Beta Readers are vital and authors would be wise to listen to them. But they, and their individual opinions, are also not the be all and end all of what should happen to a book/story. Their word is not law. If they think so, and if they take offence at their ideas/opinions not appearing in the manuscript, then it is the Beta Reader’s ego that is at issue, not the author’s.

    1. Totally agree. I guess I wasn’t clear enough (writing out of frustration does that to me!). It’s not so much that I care if my opinions are implimented. I really don’t. It’s more that I want to be assured that they are fairly considered and thought about. And with some people it’s very clear that they aren’t and that they just want to check a box.
      But I appreciate your feedback. (Snerk) :p

      1. Oh I totally get that! Been there a few times myself, and I do think that authors should pay attention to what you said because if they are just asking to say they’ve asked, they’re doing it wrong!

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