Thursday, March 22, 2012

The BETA Community

Here at YA Stands, we receive several emails a week asking about beta reads or where to find quality beta readers. While we beta read ourselves, sometimes we get bogged down and there tends to be a waiting list.

We hate to make you wait.

So here’s our solution:

YA Stands wants to create a BETA READER BANK. Essentially a list of people willing to beta read YA stories for fellow YA writers. Sounds great, right? Who wouldn’t love a phonebook-type list of beta readers to scan and find the perfect person to critique their story?

“Me! Me!”

We’re asking anyone who is willing to read and critique stories for others to send us your name (or nickname), email address, and YA subgenres that you enjoy/would be willing to read (i.e., contemporary, thriller, paranormal, all, etc.). Once we have a few names, we’ll be adding a BETA COMMUNITY tab to the blog in which your information will be included and be available for others.

Beta reading doesn’t only benefit the writer of the story. It’s very similar to reciprocal teaching in which one teaches what they know to another. Teachers use that strategy for a reason: because it works! Telling someone what you know engrains the information only that much further into your brain. The same happens when you beta read. Pointing out plot arcs and plot holes, three dimensional characters and flat characters in another’s writing can help you recognize those same elements in your own.

You don’t have time to beta read? Well, that will be the beauty of this BETA COMMUNITY. If you’re too busy to help a fellow writer out when they email you, you can simply say so and suggest they try someone else from the list.

You have something you need beta read? Ask for a swap! Beta readers trade stories all the time. We’ve mentioned in the past that finding a reliable and knowledgeable critique partner is invaluable. We also know from personal experiences that, often times, a simple beta connection turns into just that!

So if you’re looking to make more connections, find others who enjoy honing their craft as much as you, and read what others have written, email Nicole at nicolesteinhaus(at)aol(dot)com with the information above.

JOIN THE BETA COMMUNITY! (And pass the word on; the more we have the better!)

Still not convinced beta reading is right for you? Read our previous post here.     


  1. Such a great idea girls! Beta readers are so hard to find.

    Nicole, are you still going to beta read? Or will I have to find someone else? (Feeling a little panicked!)

  2. Great opportunity, can't wait =o)