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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm (sort of) approaching the end of writing the first draft of the second book in my series. In the next few months, I can see myself ready to send it out to beta readers.

However, the writing group that I used for the first book in the series about 2 1/2 years ago is a) not as active as it used to be and b) populated by completely different people, people who, obviously, have not read the first book.

So, I'm kind of at a loss as to where I should go for betas, because I feel like they would have to have read the first book in order to beta the second one. Is that too much to ask of a person? "Can you beta my book? Oh! And by the way, you have to read another one that's already published, too." I have many friends who have read the first book, but I don't really want friends to do this.

Has anyone ever experienced this before? What did you do about it?
 

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If you're asking someone to do you a FAVOR, I would provide them with a free digital copy of the first book so they can "catch up" before giving you feedback.  Obviously, they have to have read the first book so they can point out continuity issues, so that would be what I do.

I'm pretty fortunate that everyone on my beta list has read the first book, but then again, my books are a little closer together than 2.5 years. :)

 

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For my second book, I solicited betas from the readers who emailed me after reading the first.  The emails they sent usually took the form of, "Enjoyed the first one.  When is the second coming out?"  To which I replied,  "Soon, but first I need to find some beta readers.  You interested?"  

If they expressed an interest, I let them know what would be required and set a deadline.   For those who were still interested at that point, I sent the ms.  It worked out pretty well.  All but one person replied with good insight and suggestions.

Good luck!
 

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JRainey said:
I'm (sort of) approaching the end of writing the first draft of the second book in my series. In the next few months, I can see myself ready to send it out to beta readers.

However, the writing group that I used for the first book in the series about 2 1/2 years ago is a) not as active as it used to be and b) populated by completely different people, people who, obviously, have not read the first book.

So, I'm kind of at a loss as to where I should go for betas, because I feel like they would have to have read the first book in order to beta the second one. Is that too much to ask of a person? "Can you beta my book? Oh! And by the way, you have to read another one that's already published, too." I have many friends who have read the first book, but I don't really want friends to do this.

Has anyone ever experienced this before? What did you do about it?
It's actually extremely helpful to have both beta readers who have and haven't read the first. In fact...for myself, I wouldn't skip that step. Obviously I like having someone who has read the first in the series, but having someone who hasn't has helped tell me whether or not there's enough backstory--or too much!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, everyone! These are some great suggestions. Maria, I hadn't even thought that having betas who hadn't read the first one could help point out whether or not there was a good level of backstory; that's a great point. :)
 
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