View Full Version : Looking For Betas for Fantasy/Mythic Fantasy Novel

08-19-2009, 08:25 AM
Okay, so here's the skinny:

It's a fantasy novel that I could call Mythic Fantasy, or even Urban Fantasy at a very long stretch (it has some urban parts, but doesn't really feature an urban mindset or social commentary). It mines Judeo-Christian mythology for subjects, but isn't religious (neither am I), taking place in a modern, real-world setting where it turns out that Hell exists. It's a fairly straightforward fantasy in that regard.

It's an adult piece. If a little swearing and violence puts you off, you probably don't want to beta this.

Here's some really quick, out-of-context quotes so you can tell if you hate the style, or might want to slog through hundreds of pages of it:

They packed rations for the day from their suites—fruit, some rolls, Jack even stuffed a bottle of brandy in his pack.

“You bring brandy every time you go out?” Martin asked incredulously.

“You never know when it could come in handy,” Jack replied defensively. “For example, what if you get injured? Natural anti-septic! It also helps with inter-dimensional terrors.”

“Inter-dimensional terrors?”

“Yes, you know, squids with human eyes, living mountains that devour you whole, that sort of thing. Now, normally, that sort of thing would drive you insane, but a swig of brandy and bam! You’re suddenly completely okay with it.”

“How many of these ‘inter-dimensional terrors’ have you actually ran into?”

“Well, none. I read about them in a book.”

Martin perked up, “Here in Hell?”

“No. Barnes & Noble."

Malfeshna knew from the moment she stepped through the doors that it was dangerous. If there was an angel inside, he would be able to see her spell building long before she could finish it, and she could very well be attacked by a room of gun-wielding fanatics in a split second.

She was confident, though. It was a natural thing that propelled her into the room; the masculine bravado of her father, the womanly grace of her mother. Both devils. The complicated rune-structure spilled out from her head, a silent song of power that thrummed through her blood, a unique spell she had been studying for months. She pursued it like a lover, hips swaying as she felt herself drawn along the aisle, a lodestone in search of a magnet. In the very middle of the nave, she felt it: a sense of perfection, a feeling that she now stood in the exact spot where the spell would do the most damage.

She opened her eyes, just in time to see a biblical figure sitting on the edge of the pulpit’s platform. There was shock and recognition in his eyes, as he lifted a hand to try and stop her, but she was quicker. She breathed out, her smile fluttering away into a cruel whisper:


The spell clicked together silently, an invisible twisting of tiny molecules, a shifting of the elementary building blocks of life, a perversion of what was right. The air turned black and fetid throughout the chapel, a sudden contagion spreading from where she stood, a choking, lethal toxin.

Most of the men and women succumbed to it, with a sort of pathetic struggle, thrashing and gasping for clean air that would not come, collapsing in sordid heaps and piles of asphyxiating flesh. A few were strong enough to resist the effects, though, strong enough to last the few seconds it took the mystery angel to dispel the toxin with a wave of his hand.

Malfeshna glanced at him, but didn’t have time to entertain any notion of attacking him—there was a man already coming around from the nearest pew to the right, leveling a sleek assault rifle at her. To the left, a woman leapt over another pew and sprayed a rain of lead with a semi-automatic pistol.

It's almost complete, and I'm looking at starting to sift for some betas so when it is complete, I won't have to wait weeks for a bite. (If you're interested right away, this also shouldn't be an issue. By the time you get through the first parts, I'll definitely be done.)

The MS is a rough draft. I write fairly polished in my rough drafts, but if you want something that is super 100% professional, keep that in mind, there will be rewrites, that's why I'm looking for betas.

Mostly, what I'm looking for from betas is an overall impression: what works, what doesn't, where are there holes in the plot, where are characters sympathetic, where do you not give a shit what happens to them, etc.

If you want to do a line-by-line that is very helpful, but not at all necessary.

If you're interested (or just want to smash out some details about what you want/expect from beta'ing, such as trades), PM me here on the forums.

Caledonia Lass
08-24-2009, 11:07 AM
Holy Rambo Meets Constantine Batman! No, not really, but seriously, I'd read this just for the fun of it. I already like what you've got up there. :D

08-28-2009, 07:44 AM
Holy Rambo Meets Constantine Batman! No, not really, but seriously, I'd read this just for the fun of it. I already like what you've got up there. :D

I know, right? Actually, I don't have any chain-smoking badasses, so I guess I fail there.

If you're genuinely interested, send me a PM with an email address I can send something to.

09-04-2009, 12:07 AM
Salis - If you still need beta readers, pm me. I'd love to read!!

09-14-2009, 06:58 AM
Still looking for one or two more readers, see initial post for what to expect. If you're interested, PM me with an email I can send to.

Looking for more of a reader's impression--what works, what doesn't work, what makes you want to never read it again--than a technical pass, although that is fine too.

09-30-2009, 08:13 AM
Don't make me beg, people!

Looking for just one more read. I know someone out there wants to mix mojitos, Heaven and Hell.

09-30-2009, 03:34 PM
Love the style! (And love your Beta-bait! I'm gonna do the same with my thread as soon as I finish here.) Send me a chunk and I'll let you know asap.....

10-05-2009, 05:04 AM
If you're still looking for a beta, I'd be interested. Your writing style is something I'd enjoy.