|Beta Bio: general description as a beta reader
Please note: I'm currently betaing two novel length fics (plus about to start studying again, ack), so I'm not accepting any long works, but if you want help with a oneshot or short story I may have time to help you.
Apologia: This profile has gotten frightfully long, but I'm trying to give you the information to make an informed decision. Sorry about the length.
As a writer and a reader I automatically edit what I read, without having any choice in the matter (I once spent the whole night rewriting a book in my dreams because it annoyed me so much) so I'm used to the editing process. If you want someone to check your English, to see if the story hangs together as a story, or to see if the characters sound like themselves then I can probably help. I have betaed before, though mostly just serving as an intelligent spellcheck, so I know I can do it. My writing experience is mostly limited to posting fanfiction, but I have also published a couple of scientific papers and several webpages for organisations as well as produced parts of study guides for university students, edited a book of conference abstracts, and edited journal articles.
If you think I can help you, send me an email explaining what your story's about, how long it is, how quickly you want a reply, and what you're expecting of me. If all you want is a spelling and grammar check, then there's no point in me sending you a long list of plot holes (although I'd probably do that anyway). I generally prefer to edit whole stories rather than works in progress because I find that what happens later in a story affects what happens early in the story, but I'm willing to help out with WiPs if that's how you would rather work it.
If you're a non-native speaker or you're only 13 then please tell me; if the story is bad I'll say so, but if you're only thirteen the level for bad is a lot lower.
Once you've gone through a story taking my advice into account (and I don't expect you to follow all of it - it's your story - but I do expect you to at least consider it) I'd prefer to see the story again just to give it a quick look over. Often I find that in making changes I make a series of new mistakes, so I like to treat every revision as basically a new story.
I prefer stories to come as Word documents or rtf files, but I'll contact you with that sort of information when you ask for help.
|My Strengths: beta, writing, or reading strengths
My English is good, although often more instinctive than informed (but I'm getting much better at actually knowing *why* things should be as they are). I'm very good at picking up on homophones and other words used wrongly (somewhat unfortunately, since I tend to correct things I'm reading - like the newspaper - and get irritated at mistakes; there is little more annoying than the wrong their/there, less/fewer, etc). I also know how to handle punctuation (even if I'm not as comma-happy as my boss thinks I should be!). I have a good vocabulary and I've read an awful lot (when I was 13 reading a novel a day meant I was hardly doing any reading; I also read an entire dictionary once - yes, I'm weird). If you have spelling problems or are not a native English speaker I can help you out - my brother's dyslexic and I've edited stuff for him.
My knowledge of things in the Star Trek and Stargate universes used to be microscopically detailed (can you say obsessed?) and I still remember a lot of it so my canon knowledge is pretty good, certainly for the earlier seasons.
I've got a BSc in Zoology and Physics, so I may (or may not) be able to help you in those areas. I'm also interested in history, botany, ecology, music (I play nearly a dozen instruments), and languages (I know most of the basics of Latin and I'm teaching myself German).
|My Weaknesses: beta, writing, or reading weaknesses
I'm not always great at characterisations; I can tell where they're off, though, if it's a show/book I know. I'm not spectacular at fixing plot problems either - I waver between being so nit-picky other people complain at me for interrupting their viewing and so completely accepting that I don't mind what people try to get me to believe.
I'm not good at medical stuff or choreographing fight scenes. I haven't had a lot of life experience, so I may not pick up on problems that would be obvious to an older, more experienced editor. I try to not be abrasive (I'm really a very nice person :) ) but sometimes what I think is unoffensive isn't when you're on the receiving end. I can be bad at explaining things, so please feel free to ask me to clarify something.
Since I live in New Zealand there are elements of British or American culture that may elude me - though I'd be way better as a Britpicker than an Americanpicker. Americans have some weird, weird things going on! I can adapt to American spelling, though.
|Preferred: types of stories I prefer over others
I'd prefer to beta stories in the Stargate, Harry Potter, or Star Trek: Voyager universes, but if I've got a fandom listed below then I know enough about it to do characterisations and some canon nitpicking. If you're looking for an English check rather than a canon check, though, I can do pretty much anything. I'm happy to read most genres, with particular affinity for well-written angst, humour, or (though I'll deny I said this) romance. I also really enjoy AUs.
Characters I am most interested in (though I'll definitely read about others):
SG1: Jack, Sam.
SGA: Sheppard, Weir.
HP: Harry, Hermione, Snape, McGonagall, Dumbledore (though I don't mind when he's evil either), Luna.
Voyager: Janeway, Chakotay.
Pairings I normally read are SG1: S/J (don't mind Dan/Jan or D/Vala); SGA: ShWeir (don't mind Teyla/Ronan or Teyla/Ford); HP: HPHG, ADMM, HPLL (don't mind MMSS, RWLL, RLNT); Voyager: J/C (don't mind P/T, 7/Doc); Enterprise: Archer/T'Pol; Farscape: J/A; Relic Hunter: S/N; Gargoyles: G/E. I will read most others without prejudice if I have to; I just don't seek them out.
I also really like Snape&Harry guardian/mentor fics.
|Would Rather Not: I do not beta for these stories
DO NOT send me spoilers for seasons 3&4 of Enterprise or I will hate you forever! I HATE spoilers. Spoilers are evil evil evil and so do not send me anything containing spoilers without checking first (I have read all HP books and seen all 10 seasons of SG1 plus the 2 movies).
I don't like graphic (or even semi-graphic) sex; they can kiss if they have to (and it doesn't take three long paragraphs to describe), but I prefer sex to remain a private matter that I don't have to deal with. Violence and cursing don't usually bother me, though I prefer there not be a lot of the latter (though I read Terry Pratchett and watch Red vs Blue so if cursing bothered me too much I'd be in trouble!).
Horror stories are of no interest to me - my imagination doesn't need any help, thank you! I don't mind slash, but I don't usually read it and the ban on sex stands. In the Harry Potter universe I can read HPGW and RWHG if I have to, but I'm not a fan of either pairing and it may show. I'm not interested in character-bashing for the sake of character-bashing; I'm afraid I find fan wars to be completely incomprehensible.