Loretta Kendall

Romance Author

Alpha vs Beta Reader

Did you realize there is a difference?

As an author, you come to the process of your writing when you realize you may need a second set of eyes or another point of view. So, you step into the stress-filled world of finding people to read your manuscript, before it’s released to the masses. Maybe you even are hoping to have reviews ready when the release day comes.

 You have a manuscript ready and it’s time to tweak it to its best potential. It’s time to find readers to give you feedback and catch those blaring plot holes. Let’s face it. We all think our writing is pure genius, but deep down we know better. 


Someone who will give you harsh, yet constructive feedback. We all want to hear our work is wonderful, but if you aren’t looking for honest feedback, is it really going to do any good in the long run? Of course, you don’t want someone who wants you to write their version of the book either. We don’t want someone who just gives rude comments for no reason. You want an honest person who is willing to help improve your work and see you succeed. 

It’s also important to find someone familiar with the genre you are writing as well. Someone who commonly reads horror may not be the best person to give you feedback on a romantic comedy.


  • Alpha Readers give feedback for a manuscript in its rawest form. Often within the first draft stages where your book is most vulnerable to critique. They will not be looking for grammar and spelling errors. They are more there to give their point of view on the story dynamic and flow. Although, you occasionally will find a few willing to help you with minor proofreading.
  • Beta Readers come in after your work is in the final edits, almost ready for publication. Beta readers go deeper. They catch plot holes, comment on the quality of grammar issues, character development, and tell you what is or is not working. They don’t although edit your work. They only give reviews based on their POV as a reader.


  • Alpha and Beta readers are not there to write your book for you. They are readers, not your writing partner. It’s up to you to decide what’s best for your book while being open to others’ ideas. If you are looking for more a critique partner would be a better fit.

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