Beta Update

Hey all, Robin here… I thought I would provide another Beta update.  The second beta is going amazingly well.  We are still finding a few things to “tweak” in the story – but not nearly as much as we did for the first beta.  A positive sign indeed.

Also it’s good to see that some of the things we worked hard to address turned out to have the correct solution. For instance, in the first beta “Chapter 10” was very poorly rated because it introduced a new setting, too many new words, and overall left people utterly confused. We ended up breaking that chapter into pieces. Half of it was moved much earlier in the work (Chapter 5), and now both the new chapter, and what stayed put in the old chapter, are among the highest rated chapters. Always good when things show improvement rather than a decline.

So, with regard to the beta as it stands now.  Here’s where we currently are:

  • 51 beta readers (up from the original 45), three of those haven’t started (so we put in alternates) and a few of the first beta read came along for the second one.
  • 94% have started
  • 14 (30% of those that started) have finished
  • 207 session surveys have come in
  • 679 chapters have been read
  • 403 chapters have been rated

Current ratings averages are showing:

  • 4.51 – Plot
  • 4.63 – Pacing
  • 4.52 – Characters

Having all three metrics over 4.5 is the strongest beta I’ve run yet.  A very good sign for the strength of this book.

One other thing I should point out.  Michael has recently referred several of his writing buddies to me who wanted advice on how to run a beta.  I “slapped” together some information to get them started, but it’s no where near organized.  Still, it’s better than nothing. What I plan to do in the new future is to write a book on conducting beta reads, and present a more organized approach.  It’s important to me that such a reference guide be FREE to any author.  Michael and I don’t take money for helping authors succeed at writing. I don’t know exactly when I’ll have it written, but if you want to receive a free copy once it’s done, here is a link where you can sign up for it. .

All you need to do is provide me with your email address, and what file formats you prefer.  I’m sure we’ll make an announcement when it’s ready for distribution.

3 thoughts on “Beta Update

  1. You guys are amazing. This crowd source editing is an innovation for these days and times. I would never have thought of it myself. And I am grateful to those who participate. I am too selfish – a beta would be too much of a spoiler for me. But then, I am no editor, nor a writer. Just n awe of those who are.

    • Hey Mary Jane. Beta reading is a great way to get a feel of whether the book is (a) going in the right direction and (b) whether it is at a level making it “ready for primetime.” It’s not for everyone, but those who do participate seem to enjoy the process.

  2. this is great news and some high points there too! I was wandering, there was a post a while back that you said you were going to press a few copies in jan 2015 of the beta version. Is that still happening? And also how would I go about finding one or will that info come through one of your emails?
    Thanks in advance if you get the chance to respond to this.

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