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clee984
05-31-2013, 05:31 PM
Hi all,
I’m looking for a beta/mentor ideally, I think it would be good for me to have my MS looked over by someone who knows more than I do (which is basically everyone). Anyone who could help me in any way with getting published, give me any pointers, I'd be hugely grateful. Also, I’d very much like a female beta to read my book, because my two MCs are female, and it would be good to know if any of it is misogynistic or just plain insulting.

My novel could comfortably be described as historical fiction, it is set in the mid 19th Century in England, and is the story of a young housemaid who works for a wealthy family.

I have queried a couple of agents already, one gentleman got back to me and said….“I really liked this and kept reading for far longer than with less well-written submissions. The characters are intriguing, the story-line appealing, but just not a page-turner for me. I am really sorry to say this, but I have absolutely no doubt that in time you will turn out a best-seller!” which was very nice of him (he’s pretty much my favourite person on planet earth), but I’m sure he’s right, and I received the same criticism after a request for the full MS of a previous historical novel I wrote (“This is one of those submissions where it is easily possible that I am making a dreadful mistake in declining! The story is related from a most unusual perspective and there is much that is original and worthwhile. Overall somehow, it just doesn't grip, though. It should be a real page-turner and doesn't quite achieve that.”) So it looks like lack of page-turniness is one of my principal problems.

I’d be more than happy to offer my services as beta in return (such as they are, I’ve beta’d 6 or 7 novels for AW members now), and any sort of critique is fine, a very brief overview of what works and what doesn’t, or really, just any advice would be gratefully received. A warning too, there’s a fair amount of graphic sex and violence (they do say “write what you know….”), so I wouldn't want to waste your time if you prefer your historical fiction to be a bit gentler. I've never been beta'd before, and I have quite a fragile ego, so would request a wee bit of hand-holding.

Oh, and my book is 64,000 words, so even if it’s not very good, it is short.

Thank you very much.

flid76
06-01-2013, 02:10 AM
Hi there :)
I used to have a writing partner who wrote historical fantasy, so I am familiar with some things in it. I would be more than happy to take a look at a sample chapter. I can be as gentle as you need, but I'll also be honest. :)
Drop me a PM any time.

bulldoggerel
06-01-2013, 03:16 AM
I would be glad to take a look at a sample chapter. I have never done this before, but I know quite a lot about 19th century upper classes, and I've just sent off a full to an agent. My novel is about a wealthy 19th century family. Sex and violence is fine too- there was plenty of both in the 19th century! Ha!

NickDupree
06-01-2013, 10:47 AM
I'm new here, but the 19th century is a passion of mine... I'd like to help you, and have a writing buddy to help me this summer once my bizarre novel clears three chapters or more.

NickDupree
06-02-2013, 03:43 AM
Overall somehow, it just doesn't grip, though. It should be a real page-turner and doesn't quite achieve that.”) So it looks like lack of page-turniness is one of my principal problems.

How can "page turniness" be achieved? What's the best way to grab the reader and keep them?

Faye DC
06-10-2013, 05:37 PM
Hi,
I'd be happy to take a look at it for you if you still want another reader. I like historical fiction.
This would be my first time acting as a beta reader, so if you like, maybe I could just read a few chapters and if it goes well and you find my feedback helpful I could read the whole thing.