How to share your writing (online)

How to Share Your Writing- aWritersJourney.netAs an organizer of a writer’s group, over the years we’ve tried various methods with sharing our writing via the Internet. I decided to share the various hiccups and methods we’ve used.

For starters, you need to understand the basics of saving files and the methods of adding notes.

File formats:

The file format of a document is the type of file created in a program. DOC and DOCX are created by Microsoft Word, while OpenOffice creates ODT and MS Works creates WKS.

RTF DOC DOCX
WPS ODT TXT
PDF WPD EPUB
HTML MOBI

Word Processor formats explained.

To share files, RTF is the most basic of file formats that can be opened by every word processor. It strips formatting, however, so be warned about that. You can also add a tutorial of using a free service like Google Drive documents to view the document.

Asking for feedback can offer the writer a harrowing amount of worry, but ideally the feedback can provide valuable insight on improving the writing. I think it depends on the reader, since some folks don’t like genres, you should pick readers who enjoy the type of story.


How to share:

Email is one of the better methods of sending out your work. This is done by attaching the file. The recipient will open, read, and can add notes, then send it back to you.

Using a Cloud Drive is another method, but the biggest drawback is some Cloud Drives want the sender and the receiver to both have accounts. I’ve picked ones I’ve used and no not require the recipient to be a member:

googledriveI’ve used Google Drive in the past, where I upload the file to the drive, and can then share with a link. Readers view in their browser, can add notes, and you can see who read and did what on the document. Unlike some drives, the recipient doesn’t need a Google membership, but they will show up as ‘anonymous’.

dropboxDropbox and Onedrive both provide a means to save (and backup) files which syncs with a web site service. You can send a link to share a onedrivefile or an entire folder. Both of these drives provide non-members a means to view, add notes, and edit.


Some tips:

Make sure your writing includes your name and email. This enables the reader to email their feedback if you choose sharing via email. You can post in header/footer. If you print it out, make sure you have numbered pages.

Ask what you’d like in the feedback. This can include clarity with character development, plot, setting, and even grammar (although correcting grammar & punctuation is the last edit).

Get a number of opinions. And they will vary. If feedback ends up complaining about the same thing, definitely consider changing. If one person says to remove this, yet another says its fine, then you, as the author, can decide if it stays or if it goes. Even then, if you’re really attached to something in the writing, keep it. You’re the writer, after all.

Value the bad as well as the good. A good beta reader will share what they liked and what they didn’t like. Authors need to know as much as what they’re doing right as what they’re doing wrong.

Don’t let a bad review stop you from writing. Writing is a skill that develops and grows with practice. You can get better. Read more. Write more. Practice, practice, practice. You will get there.

Remember to thank the reader, even if they didn’t like it. Reading your stuff takes their time and it is generous if they’ve taken that time to give you feedback. Not all writing can be their cup of tea.

 

 

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