Don Jones®

Tech | Career | Musings

As posted previously, I’ve embarked on a fiction-writing project, and I’d be very interested in getting together a half-dozen alpha readers / beta readers. Let me emphasize that this is not an information technology or PowerShell topic.

This is a pretty serious thing for me, and so please only volunteer if you’re able to take the time. I’m expecting to release about 3,000-5,000 words weekly, and will try to do so on a regular cadence. There will almost certainly be times when whatever I’ve written will end up being trashed entirely, or where I’ll have to go back and rework vast swaths of stuff that was already “done.” I’ll be particular interested in feedback on tone, consistency, pacing, plot points, readability, and the like. The book in question is science fiction, although it’ll feel a bit fantasy-like as well, given the setting.

My hope is that I can send out manuscript updates fairly regularly, and get feedback from you via email within a week. If you fall behind, you’ll likely be dropped from the list, just to help me ensure I’m getting regular feedback from a consistent group of voices.

To give you some context, I’ve already deleted my initial manuscript attempt and started from scratch 😉 in a different voice and from a different perspective. That might happen again, as I write quickly enough that it’s not much wasted effort.

I’m not looking for copyediting, proofreading, or other “mechanical” tasks; I’m looking for engaged readers who can offer constructive feedback. You’l be paid nothing <grin>, although once I get the book to paperback stage, you’ll absolutely receive copies if you’ve stuck with me for the whole journey.

You’ll likely get the manuscript in Markdown files, which have minimal formatting and can be read in nearly any text editing application. At some point, I’ll move it into Leanpub, which can produce EPUB/MOBI/PDF proofs from that point. I may also move it into GitHub, where I can invite you to a private repo for reviews and feedback; with that in mind, please only sign up if you already have a GitHub account (you’ll be asked for that username).

If you’re interested, sign up at Note that this is a double opt-in and is hosted by MailChimp; if you don’t receive the confirmation then it’s gone to your spam folders and you won’t actually be “on” the list. It’ll be labeled as coming from my email address, although it’ll be sent by MailChimp servers, which ups its chance of being categorized as spam, especially by aggressive corporate systems.

You’ll be asked for your full name during signup; please enter it as you’d like to be credited in the hopefully eventual book. Like, you’re welcome to enter just an initial for your last name, if you prefer, or nothing at all. Whatever.

Thanks in advance!

2 thoughts on “Looking for Beta Readers

  1. I would be honored to be a BETA reader and provide feedback..


  2. Topol Gigio says:

    I hope you didn’t really delete your first attempt. The cost of storing text approaches zero and you may find something useful from the first creative burst for reuse. If nothing else, you can go back to early versions when you are blocked and compare them to new versions and see progress. Don’t throw out prose that fails a quality check.


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