Poetry Book Beta Reading Checklist
On Time Typing, Editing and Proofreading‘s Beta Readers read and review your poetry book manuscript then write a Beta Reading Report that addresses the items in the checklist below.
Our Poetry Book Beta Reading Checklist
- Preliminary pages (introduction, table of contents etc.) Is there anything missing? Any incorrect information? How can this section be improved?
- Grade each poem as follows: Excellent (does not need editing); Good but needs some editing; or Needs a lot of work (that is, either rewrite/edit the poem, or delete it).
- Rate each poem as ‘Like’ or ‘Do not like,’ and the reasons for this.
- Are the first and last poems the best poems for those important positions?
- Are there any two poems that say the same thing (or are too similar)?
- Are there any single poems that would be better separated into two distinct poems?
- Are there any poems that detract from the whole and should be deleted?
- Is the order of the poems logical and does it keep you engaged? Suggest any improvements to the order and the reasons.
- Title: rate as ‘Like’ or ‘Dislike’, the reasons for this, and any suggestions.
- Cover (if supplied): Is it engaging? Are there any ways it can be improved?
- Are there any other issues? Suggest any improvements.
In conclusion, we may recommend:
- further self-editing by you, based on our Beta Reading Report
- a manuscript appraisal by a professional editor who specialises in editing poetry, to give you more detailed guidance for self-editing
- engagement of a professional editor who specialises in editing poetry, to edit your manuscript
- improvements to the title or cover by you or your graphic designer
- (if your manuscript does not need editing or proofreading) proceed to design and/or publication.
This article has been proofread by Dee Sansom from On Time Typing, Editing and Proofreading.
Photo: Sally-Anne Watson Kane.
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