A beta reader is person who reads a manuscript for the good, bad, and the ugly, confusing or clever plot points, terrific or terrible scenes, or poorly or exceptionally written characters. It’s the way everyone reads a book, only now you’re asking someone to keep notes. A beta reader isn’t paid, but a token thanks such as a copy of the book is common. If you have cash for advice, don’t use a beta reader. Hire a professional.
Accept all comments with a polite thank you, but don’t jump on the re-edit bandwagon too soon. Just because a beta reader didn’t click with a character or a scene, doesn’t mean it should be deleted or rewritten. Think carefully about the comments. Can you see their point of view? Is it valid? Any notes from the beta reader should be taken as suggestions, not gospel. The most important thing to remember is don’t take a critique personally. Comments can be ignored. After all, this is your manuscript and changes are always your discretions.
L. A. Kelley writes science fiction and fantasy adventures with humor, romance and a little sass. Her life is in constant edit mode.