However, those who have had readers find it frustrating when you've sat on the edge of your seat waiting for the words to come out of their mouths and all you get is, "yeah, it was good."
That's it? Good!?
What else did you like about it?
"Ah, I thought the main character was nice."
That's when you come across the table and strangle her. Well, perhaps that was harsh and the dead girl on your floor is now unable to read your next draft. And, I'm going to say this, it's actually your fault. Yup, I said it. YOUR FAULT. All you asked them to do was to read it and tell you what they thought.
YOU NEED TO BE SPECIFIC! I'll say it again, YOU NEED TO BE SPECIFIC!
What can you ask your readers?
Here's a list... and don't feel afraid to give them paper and a pen and tell them to take notes. Sure, you're not paying them but they want your friendship, don't they? Especially when you promise not to ditch them when you become famous. That should be enough for them... and maybe a new IPOD.
- What did you like best about my novel?
- What did you hate most about my novel?
- How is my voice? Interesting? Unique?
- What character did you like the most?
- What character did you hate?
- Do you think I should cut any characters?
- Did you relate to the main character?
- Did the first sentence of the story grab you?
- Did the first scene want you to keep reading?
- Was the dialog realistic?
- Is the plot plausible?
- Is the ending surprising? Interesting?
- Did you like the subplot? What ones didn't you like? What subplot would you cut out?
- Do you like the antagonist? Is he real to you? Are the motives behind his/her actions plausible?