From Sarah, With Joy

*Poet * Author * Wanderluster*

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Things To Do While Waiting for Beta Readers

It's happened guys. I haven't finished editing the whole book, but I'm done-ish with the first 16 chapters, and I had an oh-duh moment when I realized I could just send those chapters off to readers so they could start. So I did/am in the process of doing so. Meaning some people have them and some others will get them/be invited to get them soon. Gah! It is crazy guys. I wrote a novel that people are reading. Another former roommate came to visit my visiting former roommate and I came home from work and saw her reading my book on the couch and she was even distracted by it instead of talking to visiting roommate for a while and it made me smile and giddy and warm and !!!!!!!!!!!! inside.

Now comes the beta-reader wait. And since waiting can really suck, here are some ideas for what to do in the meantime, which may or may not come from personal experience:

  • Flail and squee and dance around singing loudly to Wicked and Pocahontas and Smash.
  • Read 'The Book Thief' in one day.
  • Finish editing.
  • Work on the cover and formatting of a short story collection to upload on Amazon once the rest of the stories get rejected from the magazines to which they are currently submitted.
  • Think of fun/weird/random/plausible ideas for YouTube videos (marketing and creative outlet rolled into one) like audio-visual poetry or video children's books. Then realize that if you want this to be your own project and not have to rely/impose on anyone else you have to do the illustrations yourself. Spend more time deciding if that's possible/ridiculous/worth it.
  • Spend inordinate amounts of time on Pinterest, IWasteSoMuchTime, and AccioBrain. Realize it's probably good that Pottermore isn't open yet.
  • Re-watch series two of Sherlock
  • Spend increasing amounts of time on QueryTracker and AgentQuery.
  • Also the gym. Hopefully.
  • Try hard to start or at least brainstorm novel #2.
  • Freak out some more and try really hard not to bug the readers, at least not the ones who've only had it for a 24 hours.
  • Look up pictures of Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston.
  • Browse Craigslist, stressing and over-analyzing the best way to support yourself for the next year before you apply to grad school.
  • More flailing and squeeing and trying not to bug.
So yeah. That's sort of what I'm thinking will happen for the next little while. Anyone else waiting on beta readers? What are your suggestions for making the wait more bearable?

Sarah Allen


  1. Fantastic ideas. I might steal some of them, even though I'm not waiting for readers. Oh wait... no... that's just called procrastination, and I don't need any help with that!

    Enjoy several or all of your things!

  2. Great list. I like the idea of having a ton of things to do while waiting to hear back from beta readers. It'll help the time move along so much faster.
    Usually I read a lot while waiting. It's wonderful!

  3. Great suggestions. How would a random guy like me get to be considered to be a beta reader for your book? :) Otherwise, I'll have to take my chances at reviewing material on Authonomy.

  4. I'm about to send my manuscript to beta readers this week. And I'm kind of excited for the break! It'll be nice to do something fun for a couple of weeks and get some distance from it. I feel like I've been breathing this manuscript for so long. I also plan to spend lots of time on Query Tracker and figuring out next steps.

    Enjoy this time off and I hope your beta feedback is really helpful when you get it!

  5. You know, every once in a while I forget about Pottermore, then something goes and reminds me and I'm frustrated all over again. I need my Harry Potter fix, gosh darn it! Beta reading fanfiction online is starting to NOT BE ENOUGH.

  6. Add the Elton John version of Aida to your dance party. You won't regret it. Good luck with your betas.

  7. I like reading The Book Thief in one day because I love that book! But if that doesn't work, there's always laundry.

  8. I love the Book Thief!

    I find the best thing to do is sit up, look around, and realise what a pigsty my house has become. And then clean the hell out of it, because I'm not going to get around to it for another twelve months. At least.

    ALso, I've tagged you in a meme over on my blog.

  9. All those ideas sound pretty good.

    About the only thing that I did with mine was to just keep on writing.


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