For all the lovely people who have agreed to beta read for me, I’ve attached a guide for the sort of feedback I’m looking for. You don’t have to follow this, I’m happy with whatever feedback you think is relevant. Think of this as more of a ‘suggestion’ as to the sort of things that I think would be valuable to know.

(Note: this is a living document and may be updated as things change)

Chapters

  • Do any feel incomplete? What is missing?
  • Do any feel too slow, like I’ve dumped too much information or packed too much into them? Which? What sections seem unimportant?
  • Do any of chapters jar with the rest of the work? Why?

Characters

  • Are the characters sufficiently distinctive? If not what sections/traits are confusing?
  • Are there any characters that you feel aren’t needed, or who need to be expanded? Why and how?
  • Is there anyone you particularly liked? Why?
  • Is there anyone you particularly disliked? Why?
  • Is it always clear who is doing what? If not, where are the confusing sections?

Plot

  • Was there anything that was too hard to believe?
  • Was there any part that was ‘too much’. (Overly explicit, violent, or squick?)
  • Any gaping plot holes? Details, please.
  • Any unresolved plot points? Details, please.
  • Are any characters treated inconsistently across the book?

Overall

  • Did anything jolt you out of the story? In a good way or a bad way?
  • Did you take anything away from reading it? If so, what?
  • What did you like/hate?
  • Was the pacing okay?
  • What would you like to see more/less of?
  • Was it a page-turner or a slog, if it was a slog, where was it hard going?
  • Forget that this is meant to be part of a series, would you consider it a ‘complete’ novel in its own right?
  • Remembering that this is meant to be part of a series*, would you want to read more?

* The focal characters will change, but the ones in this book will go on to be the supporting cast in others. Some minor characters may get to star in their own books, and some major characters will be revisited.

I'm listening...