Acknowledgement – definition: 1. recognition of the existence or truth of something; 2. an expression of appreciation
It is human nature to want to be acknowledged whether for our day to day activities or, as we are writers, for our narratives. We can toil for days, weeks and years in our solitude, scribbling the next great novel. It is only when we share this work are we acknowledged by our peers and hopefully a wider audience. And that is the scary part! We nurture, refine and revise time and again to make our story ‘perfect’. The life lesson here is another person’s point of view will give us a new perspective, which may or may not be what we were expecting. In truth it is mainly, not. Being so close to the story, its settings and characters is a good thing when we are in creation mode but we need to step back and let it ‘rest’ a while before editing. Fresh eyes and a certain detachment allow us to really ‘see’ the narrative without our mesmerized involvement in the project.
To cushion the blow, read excerpts to your writing group or trusted friends, who you know will be honest with you but not harsh in their review. Bear in mind the genre when you share your work as not everyone will enjoy fantasy, romance or sci-fi. That way you can receive a true reflection of your novel from people who regularly read that particular genre. In many ways you are benefiting from their ‘expertise’. Beta readers are also a good way to receive great feedback.
Acknowledgement may not come as a best seller but understand, if one or two readers read your narrative and enjoy it enough to contact you to say how much they loved it then you have recognition and appreciation. Your words are out in the world for future generations to delight in. That is priceless.
A similar blog post I found this morning – http://glynisrankin.wordpress.com/2013/09/25/wednesday-writer-wisdom-the-beta-reader/