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Critique Partners and Swaps > Beta Reader/CP Swap of First 6 Chapters of Fantasy Trilogy, Open to Reading Most Anything in Return!

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message 1: by Suzan (last edited Aug 12, 2021 01:34PM) (new)

Suzan | 45 comments Looking to swap for some constructive criticism/feedback on the first 6 chapters (139 pages, roughly 45,400 words) of the first book in my light humor, snarky fantasy/sci-fi time travel adventure-romance trilogy. General/Teen audience appropriate, romance but no sex, nothing NSFW, light horror, nothing horribly gory, a little light swearing but nothing hardcore (Damn, Hell).
Audience aim: If you like 'The Princess Bride' (the book), Harry Harrison’s ‘Stainless Steel Rat’ series, or Carl Hiaasen’s novels, my writing style is much along those lines.
I have the first book written to completion, the other two volumes finished but am still polishing them.

Beta reader/CP combo OK. This is NOT a spelling/Grammar read. I'd like your opinion on stuff like: Is the story enjoyable, does it lag in spots, where do I get too wordy in others, any glaring errors, anything confusing, did the characters come off as intended, what did you like/dislike about it, should the entire thing be set on fire and tossed in a dumpster ASAP...you know, basic stuff. DISCLAIMER: Written in Third Person Omniscient, so multiple POVs, this is the first 139 pages of a 1500+ page trilogy, so not everything is neatly explained right away, but rest assured some things that may seem odd are there for a reason. :) Emotions play a large role in the magic system of my MS.

In return I'm willing to read an equivalent number of pages/words for you, any genre, really. Too big a chunk? That's okay too, just read as much as you want! If you are interested, message me!
Let me know if you want to exchange MS as Word or PDF files, when I beta I use Word with the 'Track Changes' feature enabled.
Don't forget to let me know what KIND of read you'd like! Spelling/grammar, general thoughts, readability, if you have anything special you'd like help with, etc.

‘Dances With Wolves’ meets ‘Army of Darkness’

Blurb For Trilogy:
All Dorothy destroyed immediately upon arrival in Oz, was a 2 bedroom/detached bath, house and one inattentive witch--Jason unwittingly tops that in a spectacular fashion. Tricked into time traveling on a world-changing mission, science and logic rule Jason; a brash, impulsive man who must now learn to live in a NEW world of magic, love and danger--only two of which he believes in. Abruptly labeled a ‘Wizard’, it isn’t that Jason is magic or special that he is aware of. It’s just that everyone and everyTHING has decided that yup, he is--and he’s unceremoniously shoved into the job. Now he must choose between the restrictive, modern city living he is used to...or a dangerous existence with the nomadic, primitive tribes. Then there’s that whole slippery slope of love, with jagged rocks, a weaponized chicken and poison thornbushes at the bottom--all of which resent him. It’s hero worship for an unwilling & uncomfortable hero when he hasn’t earned it; and feels a fraud. When sinister mysteries, magical shockers and impossible challenges crop up, his own expectations for himself change--and he must throw in with all three elements of his new world to rise to the occasion.

Synopsis Book 1 (the one you'll be beta reading)
All Dorothy destroyed immediately upon arrival in Oz, was a 2 bedroom/detached bath, house and one inattentive witch--Jason unwittingly tops that in a spectacular fashion. Written in Third Person Deep with multiple POVs, this is the first volume of a trilogy; the story of Jason, a closet romantic and frustrated adventurer who often leaps before he thinks. He is an emotionally clueless, socially underdeveloped young man living in the near future in a land called Amayeliehiya, in a world very much like our own. The restrictive, invasive government and its control over every aspect of life has left him bored, disgruntled and restless.
He agrees to participate in a four-hour time travel experiment as an unseen historical observer, but once the procedure begins he is informed of the true purpose of his trip, which—no hero--he resists: when he arrives in the past he is to sabotage and destroy the beginnings of The Framework, the system of government currently stifling his world. But the facility where Jason is being–-now unwillingly--sent back in time, is attacked and he is thrown into a parallel past, similar in many ways but with startling differences—including a disturbing separation that exists between the two peoples occupying this land: the Amayeliehiya, who are technologically advanced and live within a modern, walled city; and the tribal barbarians whom the Amayeliehiya control--a nomadic people denied the use and knowledge of anything that would help them advance.
Jason is captured by one of these warrior tribes, and due to his strange ways and claims of being an Amayeliehiya, is immediately assumed to be a feared wizard never to be crossed or refused. Uncertain if his attackers from the future will follow him to this past, Jason goes along with this misapprehension at first in order to survive, joining the tribe as their tribal wizard and forming an uneasy friendship with Haos, the tribal chieftain.

In this skewed parallel past, the ersatz wizard routinely runs afoul of magical things, creatures, and places, terminally clueless or failing to notice them--too absorbed in the high adventure he has embarked upon and how great he looks in his shirt. On top of this, Jason is an absolute magnet for the ridiculous—plagued by events that are comically, embarrassingly, absurd. It isn’t that Jason is magic or special that he is aware of—it’s just that everyone and everyTHING has decided that he is, to his confusion and consternation. It’s hero worship for an unwilling & uncomfortable hero when he hasn’t earned it, and feels like a fraud. Tricked into time traveling on a world-changing mission, science and logic rule Jason; a brash, impulsive man who must now learn to live in a NEW world of magic, love and danger--only two of which he believes in. He stubbornly sticks to science and logic, trying to get his new world to conform to his beliefs instead of adapting to his new environment. Along the way, Jason encounters a host of strange and wonderful magic creatures, people and things, and must flip his entire way of thinking and behaving in order to learn and grow as a person. All this while sinister mysteries and impossible challenges large and small have an annoying habit of cropping up...

Jason never expected to meet Haos, the tribal chieftain whom he has to convince not to kill him, a six-foot-tall birdman named Zeki who wants him for his own personal lab rat, the beautiful and fascinating Leilah who could just as well do without him, Mihr, Leilah’s ex who creeps around backed by a sinister magical presence, weird old enigmatic Harry with his murderous animals and the strange spring he tends, Isme the powerfully magic naiad who decides Jason is HERS, the brutal warrior Senqu who just plain wants Jason dead and as soon as possible thank you, fey Cyn the dangerous and dark huntress who becomes Jason’s personal stalker, Josephine who mostly wants to bite Jason’s face off and small Violet...a weaponized, battle-ready chicken.
In this new land Jason has to decide if he will go through with destroying The Framework, in it’s infancy behind Amayeliehiya city walls and throwing in his lot with the tribe and their hardscrabble existence, or to join the Amayeliehiyas in their shining city and live in comfort...

...but even if he does change things here, will it affect the future he left behind?


message 2: by mrharville (new)

mrharville | 16 comments * This seems like it could be an interesting project, if you are interested in swapping for my retro-military/sci-fi? Sadly I was forced to re-write my manuscript because my agent thought the strong female character would be unattractive to my target audience . . . so I am sort of lost at sea.


message 3: by Suzan (new)

Suzan | 45 comments mrharville wrote: "* This seems like it could be an interesting project, if you are interested in swapping for my retro-military/sci-fi? Sadly I was forced to re-write my manuscript because my agent thought the stron..."

Sure! And I am all FOR strong female characters, they exist just like in real life...


message 4: by Suzan (new)

Suzan | 45 comments mrharville, if you are still interested in doing a swap let me know! Since my first three chapters are 65 pages, we can swap whatever your equivalent to that is.

I got some great feedback from the two writers who swapped with me already--thanks you two and keep writing! I'm going to rework my manuscript and after that will bring it back for round 2 of beta reading. :)


message 5: by DeAndre (new)

DeAndre Bowstrong | 3 comments Hey Susan :)

sounds interesting! I'd definitely be up for giving it a read.

I'm writing an epic Fantasy and would be very keen to do a bit of a swap. My first 4 chapters are about 11k in total and there's a very natural break after that. Do you know what the word count is for your 65 pages? :)


message 6: by Suzan (new)

Suzan | 45 comments The word count is approximately 17,300. We can swap the equivalent, whatever you feel is fair.


message 7: by DeAndre (new)

DeAndre Bowstrong | 3 comments Ok great, well I'll pull together the first 15-17k of mine and then we can swap if you want? :)


message 8: by Suzan (new)

Suzan | 45 comments DeAndre wrote: "Ok great, well I'll pull together the first 15-17k of mine and then we can swap if you want? :)"

Sounds good! Please message me your email and I'll respond with mine so we can get started!


message 9: by Suzan (new)

Suzan | 45 comments OK, I'm finished with beta readers for now, I've got some reworking to do and then I'll open it up again to round 2! Thank you very much to my fellow authors who were kind enough to swap chapters with me and the best of luck to you all!


message 10: by Suzan (new)

Suzan | 45 comments Hey, this monster is DONE and I'm in need of a final round of beta/CP reads before it's off to the editor! Any takers?

I realize what I'm asking you to read is a chunk, so if you only get through part of it that's fine--any feedback helps!


message 11: by Julie (new)

Julie A. | 9 comments I have a finished yet unedited manuscript but I was hoping that maybe I could send you parts of it over time for feedback? I'll try to do a turn around of your story in the time frame you ask me to do.

A little about my story:
*There is a sudden catastrophe that happens which destroys Destiny's current home town, as she's in her father's hotel (which is linked to their apartment).
*Something is very wrong as she observes how people disappear right after their death without leaving a trace of themselves behind
*As destiny discovers more and more mystery, she is faced with the difficult decision of what to do next as she's left all alone without a clue about why everything keeps happening.

It is the first book of the triology and in the first draft it went up to 80,000 words I think. If you're interested with getting parts of my manuscript over time as I work more on it, I'll be happy to read as much of your story as I can. You can message or email me at julieadgriffs@gmail.com


message 12: by David (new)

David Octavian (inziko) | 58 comments Hi Susan - Let me know if you're interested in swapping your work for a Dark Fantasy novel. It's 155k words but I can only send you the first 37k (same length as your chapters). Kindly see below info and let me know via PM if you're interested. Thanks. :)

Genre: Adult Dark Fantasy with Mystery and Horror elements.
Keywords: Prophecy, Kingdom, Mysticism, Dark, Atmospheric

Caleb - a mercenary with a mysterious past - escapes from his prison inside a high dark tower and is tasked with retrieving a long-lost journal which is the last hope for the salvation of his world threatened by a dark prophecy.

I can provide feedback on characters (voice, consistency, personality), worldbuilding (setting, description, exposition), plot, writing style and flow of story.


message 13: by Suzan (new)

Suzan | 45 comments Bumping to ask for fresh swaps now that my final editing is done! Anyone interested?


message 14: by OsiriumWrites (new)

OsiriumWrites | 5 comments Hey there Suzan,

I'd be willing to give it a read, provided you still have room?


message 15: by Aich (new)

Aich Elle (aichellethecnd) | 9 comments Hi Suzan, I don't know if it's too late but I think my style of Beta reading is exactly what you are looking for.

aichelle91@gmail.com is my email if you are still wanting more feedback.

Thanks,
Aich


message 16: by Annie (new)

Annie | 16 comments Hi there, I realize this is an older-ish thread, but I'd be willing to swap for the same amount of words (my entire manuscript is 95k, but if you'd be willing to read the first half - so 45k words - let me know, and I'll do your whole one). Mine is also fantasy, but YA. Feel free to DM me or email me at diana.elizabethanne (at) gmail.com. Cheers.


message 17: by Melody (new)

Melody Quinn | 10 comments This sounds like a great story! And the writing style sounds like what I'm trying to accomplish as well with my YA Fantasy series inspired by the nordic and celtic cultures.

Would you still be interested in a swap? I'm worried about pacing and character connectability for my current draft.

If you do not have time for a swap, I understand. Just thought I'd ask. :)


message 18: by Kristen (new)

Kristen Danckert | 4 comments Hey! This sounds like a fun read! Let me know if you're interested in a swap. Alternatively, if you'd like to incorporate edits from other beta readers first (It seems like a lot of people replied) and then want to do a swap, that's fine too!


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