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  • aleirian
    Hi all, I just finished working on all of the stories in my queue and wanted to toss my hat into the fire once again. When I started as a beta, it was
    Message 1 of 2 , Dec 23, 2007
      Hi all,
      I just finished working on all of the stories in my queue and wanted to toss my hat into the fire once again.  When I started as a beta, it was recommended that we post a description of our strengths or beta-review habits, so I'll do that again.
      For those who are interested, I can perform three types of beta-review.
      Grammar and Punctuation.
      Grammar and punctuation aren't my greatest strengths, but I've bought more than a few grammer books in the last couple of years, so if I don't know the answer I can look it up. :)
      Simple Analysis.
      These are the fast-turnaround, I-just-need-another-set-of-eyes type of requests. Did I like the story? Was there anything glaringly wrong with the plot? Are the characters out-of-character?  For these requests, I will read the story once or twice and give a simple critique of it's strengths and weaknesses. I won't perform any in-depth analysis, and I don't expect the author to re-write the story based on this feedback.
      Story lengths for this type of request should not exceed 15,000 words, please, because it's not possible to keep my analytic muse in-check for stories longer than that. :)
      Constructive Analysis.
      This is my strength - I'm a beta-muse with emphasis in character and plot development.
      I take the beta-process seriously, and for this request, I will perform several reads of the author's story in an attempt to give the author the most constructive feedback possible. On the initial read I will try to identify with the reader and add comments where the reader could get confused, and note areas that rely heavily on knowledge of previous episodes which may detract from the story if the reader has not already seen those episodes.  During subsequent reads, I will try to identify with the author - since I now know what the author is trying to accomplish via plot and character development - and can supply suggestions on how to get there more effectively.  
      I adore story sequels, so many of my suggestions lead to longer, more involved storylines. I can be a harsh critic, but I always try to be constructive, because I *want* to read good stories.  I do ask that authors be willing to perform at least one, possibly two, re-writes after receiving this level of feedback - which is not to imply that the author needs to incorporate the suggestions but rather to point out that there's no real point to my doing a character development and plot analysis if the story is already "finished."  :) 
      Story Preferences:
      1 - Stories should be at least 3000 words, though longer is better.
      2 - Stories longer than 30,000 words should come with a basic plot outline.
      3 - Teamfic, friendship, hurt/comfort, angst, slash, and just about any male/male pairings are okay.
      4 - Male/female pairings are not okay, simply because I can't get my head around those pairings and would be unable to give the author a fair appraisal of his or her work.
      5 - Darkfic is okay, but will be negotiated on a case by case read.
      One last note, because I do take the process seriously - and because my job is extremely time intensive between January and June - I cannot guarantee an overnight turn-around though I will try to turn the stories around quickly.  Please expect at least 3 days for a review.
      Feel free to contact me directly at aleirian@... if you have a story that I can assist with.
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