A few weeks ago, I sent my upcoming release, Honor, to six of my close writer/reader friends (ones who are guaranteed to give me honest, critical feedback) to give the story a beta read, looking for loose ends and inconsistencies. On facebook, I asked for more beta readers and received four more responses.
I've already received half of those readers' opinions and so far, Honor's receiving 4 - 4.5 stars for the way it stands now. A few slight tweaks and it will be a 5-star read for sure.
I haven't gone over every detail of the critiques yet but the readers all put a few suggestions in the body of their return email. Already, a few of those suggestions stood out as "Oh yeah!" moments, changes that I know will be the right move even if they're only mentioned that one time. Other suggestions just don't feel right and this is definitely the time to "trust my gut," as it were.
All in all, this is turning out to be a great process and I love the reactions I'm getting. I've written a story that keeps the reader engrossed, makes them forget to watch for flaws, and is a joy to read. I'm thrilled with these responses and maybe one day I'll even reveal the reason I wrote Honor.
Happy reading, writing, and blogging!