JOIN MY BETA READING TEAM!

  • I currently have 4 finished manuscripts and one rough draft manuscript I'd like to find beta readers to provide feedback on the characters, character development, plot, world building, and development of the romance. When something works for them, or doesn't work, and why or why not. This is done via email; I'll send 5 chapters at a time in PDF, along with a short list of 9 questions to answer for each chapter; the 9th question is optional, for you to give a prediction about what you think will happen; some of my beta readers have had a lot of fun with that!

  • Please fill out the questions for each chapter and send as soon as you finish reading that chapter, before you go on to the next. I'm looking at a turn-around time of 2-3 days for each chapter, although understanding that life happens. As soon as I get the questionnaire back on the last chapter you received, I'll send the next batch. At the bottom of this page I've listed the questions that I ask.

  • Please review the below information, and the story synopses provided, and if you are interested in being on my Beta Reader team, use the contact button on the right or you can privately message me on Facebook or Twitter and let me know which manuscript you'd like to read.

  • If you are new to beta reading and not sure how it works, the last entry on this page is a section giving details and some youtube vlogs (vlog = video blog) by Jenna Moreci, that I use for my model for the process.

  • Below I've provided a short synopsis for each manuscript, as well as its status. For the series books, I'd specifically like some readers to read the second book first, so it will be their first introduction to the main characters, who would have appeared as secondary characters in the first book.

RATINGS
There are a few steamy/explicit adult scenes in each book, appropriate to the story line and the development of the romance; make no mistake, however! I am not writing erotica nor am I writing "sweet" with the bedroom door shut.
(I like to stress the "appropriate" part)

 
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CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE SERIES

I'm working on a four-book contemporary "sheikh" romance series, Sons of the Desert. There are four brothers, the sons of Sheikh Rashid, an ambassador for a small oil-wealthy Arabic country, and his wife Elyse, an independent American artist. Each brother finds love with an American woman. In doing so, I've really worked hard to eschew the cliche. I mean, I've tried really, REALLY hard. I have this thing about cliches, ugh. Anyway. I've spent time in the middle east, a year in Cairo as an exchange student through U of California, and a year in Saudi Arabia working under contract in a hospital. I've tried to incorporate my personal experiences with the culture into my books to add color and flavor. I really loved the people and the culture, and I hope that shines through in my writing!

Status: The first two books in the series are completed, and as polished as I can get them.

 

SWANSONG
first in the series

In coastal southern California, Khalid, a visiting university professor from the Middle East, sees a vibrant, stunning belly dancer and instantly determines that she must belong to him. Sarah believes it is only the exotic belly dancer that he desires rather than the shy social worker beneath the sensual costume, but she has to resist not only Khalid but her own strong attraction to him. Khalid persists, however, determined to win her. In this he is aided by the charming matchmaking efforts of some of the Arab students in his charge who befriend Sarah. Just as Khalid and Sarah finally overcome the barriers between them, however, a jealous woman threatens to destroy their newfound relationship, claiming Khalid as her own.

Status: *Done! Finis!*

 

CASTLES IN THE SAND
second in the series

A proud fighter pilot, Bennett Al Mansour's dreams shatter with the explosion of a landmine. Vibrant and dedicated, Tanya Groves is determined to get the brooding Arab back on his feet. As he rebuilds his life and works with Tanya to get back on his feet, Bennett discovers a new passion, for the pretty redhead whose determination has helped him to find a new purpose.  But will he have to choose between his love for his country and his love for the woman of his dreams?

Status: *Beta readers needed!*

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PARANORMAL ROMANCE SERIES

I'm working on a three-book light paranormal romance series, Wishes & Dreams; the lines are a little blurry. My primary desire is for my stories to be romantic, charming and with lots of humorous moments. My heroes and heroines (as well as an antagonist) include Djinn (genies) and shapeshifters. For the most part the world-building, especially for the Djinn, I've tried to make uniquely my own; i.e., not based off of Disney or Barbara Eden or anyone else's. I've incorporated a lot of cultural touches from my experiences in the middle east, as noted in the Sons of the Desert section above, again for some color and flavor :)

Status: The first two books in the series are completed, and as polished as I can get them.
I'm hoping to have the third and last book, A Cat for Troy, finished and ready for beta reading by summer 2018.

 

WISHES IN A BOTTLE
first in the series

          Centuries ago, in plague-struck Italy, Julian DiConti cast a powerful spell to have unlimited power to be able to help people. The spell goes spectacularly awry, leaving Julian enslaved to a Djinn bottle, bound to grant three wishes to each Master of the bottle until one Master uses all three wishes to help others. More than anything, Julian longs for a normal life – for a home, and a family. After six hundred years, however, he has begun to despair of ever being freed from the spell.
     Enter Alessandra DiConti, a young woman who has followed her calling to help others. The youngest of her family, she has watched her five sisters give up their hopes and dreams as they have been pushed into marriages of her father’s choosing. She views marriage as a trap and vows never to be caught in it. Then one day she finds an old perfume bottle in her attic. She's drawn to the handsome, brooding Djinn. She’d gladly free him from the spell if she could, but he can’t tell her how, and one by one she’s forced to use the precious wishes to help others. But where will that leave Julian, and the growing love between them?

Status: *Done! Finis!*

A GIFT OF JACINTH
second in the series

     Douglas McCandliss considers himself an ordinary kind of guy, leading an ordinary kind of life. His biggest problem is that his alcoholic ex-wife kidnapped their two young children and disappeared. When a young woman appears in his living room and announces she’s a genie, come to grant him three wishes, he thinks she’s escaped from the funny farm. In no time at all, she reunites him with his children, and then proceeds to join them in turning Douglas’ well-ordered life upside down. What with the ebullient Jacinth’s beyond-beautiful mother popping in, followed by her languishing suitors, a supercilious shapeshifting cat, a disapproving guardian genie, and Douglas’ ex-wife trying to kidnap the children again, Douglas soon begins to wonder if he’s the one that needs to be in the funny farm!
     Jacinth has absolutely no intention of falling in love with a mortal. Having watched her mother grieve for a millenia over the human man that she loved, Jacinth has no intention of spending an eternity in mourning. Why should she love a mortal anyway, when there were so many handsome genies to choose from? Of course, she hasn't found one she could love, but she's only 900 years old, she just needs more time to run into the right genie. When she agrees to stay awhile with Douglas to help him with his children, she certainly doesn’t foresee falling in love. Even if her heart does go pitta-pat when he smiles at her. Because there is no way she’ll allow herself to love a human. Ever.

Status: *Beta readers needed!*

 

 

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A FANTASY PARANORMAL ARABIAN NIGHTS ROMANCE

WHEN DARKNESS FALLS is a sweeping fantasy romance set in a medieval middle eastern city (think of Arabian Nights or Kismet). There are paranormal elements: vampires, djinns, shapeshifters, and others. It's a stand-alone, not part of a series, but it is possibly a trilogy, separated into three parts/books. It's not a traditional romance in the sense that the hero and heroine do not meet immediately (but when they do, all hell breaks  loose!), which is why I'm considering it fantasy genre, but the romance is nonetheless the main focus of the book, even if it does take a long time to build up to it. But I do need to make this distinction so that the reader does not have the expectation of the meeting and romance immediately.

Here's a brief run-down of the story:

     Ruled by a gracious, wise Sultana, the humans of the great desert city of Al Khair dwell in uneasy peace with the vampires and demons who claim the lands as their ancestral homelands under the leadership of an ancient, powerful vampire. Their shaky truce becomes strained when a young human woman arrives from distant lands.
     Orphaned since childhood and outcast, Alyssa joins a caravan to the fabled Al Khair where she seeks only to make a new life for herself. A life that quickly becomes complicated when she draws the attention of the Dark Lord himself.
     A thousand years ago, Lord Damien permitted the humans to build their city. When he senses a new, immensely powerful magical being in the land, Damien suspects the humans of plotting to overthrow him. Furious, he searches for the source of this power, but he cannot stop thinking of the young woman in the tower who had seen through the glamour spell that cloaks him from humans. When he discovers that Alyssa is the mysterious being he has been seeking, his determination to have her for his own threatens to pit the two races, human and vampire, against each other in all-out war.

Status: *ON HOLD FOR BETA READING FOR NOW*
~Pending Revisions~

 

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NEW TO BETA READING?

Okay, Jenna Moreci is my goddess of the Beta Reader process!  She has a series of youtube vlogs on beta readers.  It's from these that I'm basing my own beta reader process. Here's a comprehensive list of her vlogs on the subject. These are really fun to watch as well as informative, she's just fabulous! And yes! I will be using the specific questions she suggests! She'd done some older vlogs, but has started a new, more updated set of vlogs on the topic, the newest first:

Then the older ones, which are also well worth watching:

 

MY BETA READER QUESTIONNAIRE

These are the 9 questions I send for each chapter
(the questions are a little different for When Darkness Falls, since there are fantasy elements & world-building involved)

Chapter: ___

1. What are your initial thoughts and impressions after reading this chapter?
2. What are your thoughts on the hero and/or heroine?
3. Other characters in the chapter, if any: How do they come across to you?
4. Scenes in the chapter: Does each scene work? Do you understand what is happening?
5. World Building: Does it work for you? Why or why not? Do you get a sense of time and place?
6. Were any parts confusing or inconsistent?
7. On a scale of 1-5, how much did you enjoy the chapter?
8. On a scale of 1-5, how eager are you to read the next chapter?
9.  Do you have any predictions, i.e., guesses as to what will happen next or in the future? (optional... I leave this in because you all seem to like it so much, and it tickles me to see your predictions)

 

 

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