Okay, so we all heard of beta readers. You know, those beautiful creations that help whip your manuscripts into submission-ready pieces of artwork. But what about those less heralded creations? Yes, my friends, I'm talking about the "Alpha" reader. The one who sees your work before you ship it off to get attacked by a red pen.
But what exactly is an alpha reader? Well, Webster dictionary says...okay, I don't think any dictionary is really savvy on the perks of having an alpha reader. So, my lovely followers, I will supply you with my own definition while paying homage to my favorite (and only alpha reader), my cuz, Marquita.
So, why is Quita such an awesome alpha?
1. She laughs...on the areas that are supposed to be funny.
2. She cries...on the areas that are supposed to be sad.
3. Sometimes she does a combination of 1 and 2, and I start thinking that I'm the coolest writer since John Green.
4. She always sees the good in my manuscripts, even when I don't.
5. If she sees anything wrong, she blankets it by first telling me why it could work (I'll let my beta readers tear me a new one for any mistakes).
6. She's an aspiring author, too, so she's going on this scary ride with me towards publication.
7. She lets me bounce new ideas off of her, and I never worry that she may steal them!
8. She doesn't let me give up. Ever. No matter how many rejections I collect. No matter how many negative comments I receive during workshops. No matter how many times I want to bang my head against the desk to get ideas out. She believes in me, and you just can't find that kind of support in forums and/or message boards. Okay, maybe you can. But it takes a while to get to that level of trust.
Okay, I think I've been schmaltzy enough. To balance the score, may I please add that she's the same color of a Simpsons character and she has an unhealthy obsession with Casey James from American Idol? There, I feel much better.
What about you all? Do you have an alpha reader? Why are they so awesome? Please comment below or post your own blog--just leave the link below. :)