Saoirse Redgrave, double finalist in Textnovel.com's first writing contest, was excited to send out chapters 1-7 of "13 to Life: A Werewolf's Tale" to members of her private writers' group.
"The chapters have been revised and revitalized since they first began appearing on Textnovel in serial form back in late November. New characters, new scenes, new action and angst--I loved being able to share them with some of my loyal followers," Redgrave says. "What readers are seeing now is much closer to what editors and publishers will see."
Writers' group members are a combination of fans, avid readers, published authors and aspiring authors. "Frankly, anyone's invited to join. All they need to do is sign up at my blog and they can get involved. No emails get sold or shared--my writers' group is very dear to me," Redgrave points out.
After reading chapters 1-7, readers are encouraged to participate in an opinion-based poll that gives Redgrave better insight into readers' minds. "At a certain point as an author tells a story, the author knows so much about it that he or she may overlook stuff--like excluding details--and create mental barriers for readers. My readers are helping me make sure that those barriers are torn down. They're my vanguard and they can't imagine how much their time and efforts are appreciated. Some of them read the story immediately and contacted me to let me read their initial thoughts. That's just so inspiring!"
After taking the poll, readers' names are thrown into a hat and a single name is drawn for prizes. "I can't afford to give away a Kindle, but I'm giving away things that are directly related to the first seven chapters of the book," Redgrave explains. "I think I'll make my son draw the winner's name on video and post it on YouTube. I'm a big fan of making things as much fun as possible--especially for folks helping me out."
At least one reader has already responded with a very useful comment. "He had a suggestion for a part of a scene. It would be like five seconds in real life, maybe a few sentences of story, but it was absolutely great! As soon as I read it I thought: Well that's one name I'll need to add to the Acknowledgements page!"
Does Redgrave's private writers' group have more room for interested readers? "Absolutely. I can't say 'the more the merrier' because I don't want this getting out of control, so I'll probably limit membership at some point. But I'm surely not ready to do that yet. The novel's a young adult paranormal romance."
If you'd like to join Saoirse Redgrave's private writers' group, you can fill out the form labeled 13 to Life-Writers' Group near the bottom of the page at Redgrave's blog.
Read Redgrave's original "13 to Life: A Werewolf's Tale" at Textnovel.com.