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How to Get Feedback on Your Self-Published Book

March 13, 2024 (Last Updated March 18, 2024)

Marcy G.

If you’re looking to self-publish your book, it can be difficult to not only get the word out about your book, but gathering feedback and reviews is also important. Getting feedback on your self-published book is crucial for improving its quality, identifying areas for enhancement, and gauging reader response. Here are several ways to gather manuscript feedback:

Beta Readers

These are individuals who read your book before publication and provide feedback on its content, plot, characters, and overall appeal. You can find beta readers through social media, writer forums, or by reaching out to your network.


Book Clubs

Join or create a book club focused on your genre or niche and engage with members. This is a great way to make connections with other book enthusiasts. Once you foster these relationships, you can feel comfortable asking them for input on your own work.


Online Review Platforms

Platforms like Goodreads, LibraryThing, and Amazon allow readers to leave reviews. Encourage readers to leave reviews by including a request at the end of your book or on your author website. Amazon tends to be able to track who you know personally, so if you have a friend or family member leave a review for your book, they may flag the review and have it removed. Even more reason to figure out different ways to acquire reviews!


Author Groups and Forums

Join online communities for self-published authors where you can exchange feedback with fellow writers. Websites like Wattpad, Scribophile, or Absolute Write have dedicated spaces for feedback and critique. Writer’s groups are a safe space to ask for advice and get input on the writing process, self-publishing your book, and asking for feedback.


Social Media

Utilize platforms like Facebook and Instagram to connect with readers and solicit feedback. You can run polls, ask questions, or host giveaways to encourage engagement. Social media goes hand-in-hand with creating a community and general awareness about yourself and your work, so make sure you dedicate time to building your online platform!


Reader Surveys

Create a survey using platforms like Google Forms or SurveyMonkey and share it with your email list, social media followers, or website visitors. Ask specific questions about what readers liked, disliked, and what they'd like to see improved.


Professional Editing Services

Hire a professional editor to provide comprehensive feedback on your manuscript. Editors can offer valuable insights into areas like plot structure, character development, pacing, and writing style.


Book Fairs and Author Events

Participate in book fairs, author signings, and literary festivals where you can interact directly with readers. Use these opportunities to gather feedback and engage with your audience. You would be surprised by how many book fairs exist at your local libraries and surrounding areas! This is a great way to network with local authors, small publishing companies, and writer’s groups.


Reader Feedback Services

Some websites offer reader feedback services where you can submit your manuscript for review by a panel of readers. While some services charge a fee, they can provide valuable insights from a diverse range of readers.


Author Website or Blog

Maintain an author website or blog where readers can leave comments and feedback. Engage with your audience by responding to comments and fostering a sense of community.


Book reviews and manuscript feedback can be used constructively to improve your book. Not all feedback will be positive, but each comment can provide valuable insights for honing your craft and enhancing your work. The more reviews you acquire, the more feedback you’ll gain, and overall exposure to potential readers looking to gain insight before purchasing. No matter what, approach feedback with an open mind and know that a high number of reviews is great exposure for your book, no matter what.

For more self-publishing advice, subscribe to the 48 Hour Books newsletter. This is where we also announce offer codes and giveaways!

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