Revisions Process–Beta Reading

This is post four in a series about how I’m revising and resubmitting my novel in response to a R&R request from an agent. Post One was about how I made myself a schedule to live by, Post Two was about reading my old manuscript, and Post Three was about my mid-level revisions process.

After I finished my mid-level revisions, I knew that I wanted to send the novel back out to beta readers.  I had two goals: (1) I wanted to know whether my new draft addressed the agent’s feedback, and (2) I wanted another sensitivity beta, this time from someone I didn’t know and who hopefully wouldn’t hold back if my characterizations and portrayals with my characters of color were unintentionally offensive.

As usual, my problem with beta readers was getting them to get back to me on time.  About 2/3 of my beta readers responded by the deadline I set of two weeks, including my sensitivity beta reader.  The responses I received were mostly helpful.

I used the time that my novel was out with my beta readers for two purposes.  First, I desperately needed some down time to de-stress and recharge.  I’d been sprinting through these revisions for over a month and I was starting to run out of “go.”  My brother was home from Amsterdam for two weeks and my grandma was up from Florida, and it was nice to spend some time with both of them.  I also worked a little on some short stories (though I still haven’t submitted them around again–bad me).

I’ve compiled their feedback into a reference document that I’m considering as I do my micro-revisions, which I’ll talk about next week!

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