Alpha-Reading, a Primer

Mary Robinette Kowal is all sorts of awesome. I think I mentioned I first “discovered” her at Readercon a couple of years ago, right before Shades of Milk and Honey was released (she had actually just gotten an author copy at or right before the con). (Actually, I wrote a little bit about another con experience with her here, too.)

One of the things that I think is awesome of her is her wilingness to open up some of her WIP’s for “Alpha” reading – allowing people to read along as she is drafting a novel, and provide feedback – specifically reactions about the reading experience (how well the story is coming through).

She recently outlined some thoughts on the process, aptly titled “How and why I use online alpha-readers while writing novels.

I mention this for two reasons. First, for those readers that are interested, hop over to her site and keep an eye out for any “current” projects that may be underway. The second is a little more self-serving while sharing….

Still being in the pre-publication, craft-development trenches, I am always on the lookout for things that might be useful some time down the road. This is one of those ideas, and the explanation behind her implementation makes sense, and is something to keep in mind for when I get to said point down the road. So I’m linking it here for my own future reference (hence the self-serving portion). At the same time, I am sure there are other writers in a similar position as myself that might be interested in the process for some point in their own careers, that may not have found MRK’s blog (yet)…

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