My writer’s journey has led me to figuring out how to get feedback on my first novel, “Tishta the Crystal Orb,” prior to its publication. Over the course of the last year, whenever I talked to people about the book, I asked them if they would become Beta Readers. I ended up with a list of around two dozen friends and acquaintances, as well as a few strangers. Over the weekend, I felt ready to share “Tishta” with other people, so sent out an email explaining what I was requesting of them. To my happy surprise, seven of them have agreed and taken possession of a beta copy of the ebook and provide me their thoughts about it.
One of the complications is how to communicate the feedback. I knew that in a Word document, you could take notes, embedded in the text. This is how my editor, Anne Bean, provided feedback on the first draft of “Tishta.” Recently, I discovered you can make notes in both iBooks and Kindle. This blog tells how to do it for Kindle on a Mac. A following blog will include iBooks instructions.
First, download the .mobi file. If you double-click it, Kindle will open into the book. This can be pretty slow, so be patient.
You’ll have to scroll back to see the title page, copyright, beta readers’ notes and, dedication. Otherwise, just start reading. When you find something to comment about, click the “notes” icon—at the bottom of the menu on the left side.
That should open the Notebook panel.
Next, highlight the text you want to attach a comment to, and click “Add Note.”
This should bring up a pop-up dialog where you can type the comment.
Click “Save.” The highlighted text and the comment should show up in the Notebook.
Keep reading. Find another place to note.
Click save. It will show up beneath the first comment in the Notebook.
One note about text selection: Always select more than one word, otherwise, there is no highlight to go with the comment. It will be easier for me to match up the comment with the text if I have some context to go on.
When you are ready to export the Notebook, click the upload icon at the top of the Notebook panel. Click OK on the warning. Then save it somewhere that you can find it.
This generates a .html file. Here’s what it looks like.
I haven’t figured out how to import the .html yet so I can apply it to my own copy of Tishta, but I think this will be a workable option.
There is definitely a way to make notes on Apple devices—specifically, my iPhone—that is similar to the steps above. It appears to be complicated to extract/export the notes from an Apple device. It might be possible to sync up to your Amazon account, but that might not work for a local copy of a book. I don’t see the export icon that some of the how-to blogs talk about. One talked about a new email option, but I can’t find that, either. If someone figures this out, let me know and I’ll update this blog.
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