It's been an interesting few weeks, but little of it had to do with writing. Every few of days I have dragged out a short story I started a couple of years ago and did a bit of reworking. Now it needs to have other eyes on it. I am blind to certain possible errors. I'm looking for volunteers.
I have a penchant for reading other people's work before it is published. (The last one was Kaye George's Requiem in Red.)
I will read the first part of anybody's story but I have learned to set a limit. If I don't like the piece for any reason, I will stop reading after 3500 words, the length of one of my short stories. It may be a fine work that simply doesn’t appeal to me. It may be a flawed piece that needs lots of work, but the author thinks it is wonderful the way it is.
I am going to be honest about what I think. So if you believe your work is perfect the way it is and only want me to tell you that, don't give it to me to read.
I like particularly historicals that have yet to be published. If I like something enough I will review it on Amazon. In fact I was finally able to post a review of a book I loved but wasn't to be published for some time. (Delivering Truth by Edith Maxwell. I loved it. Take a look)
There is something to be said for reading pre-published works where I have particular insight into the world. I have a pretty good idea of how 19th century machinery worked, and how farm and housework with done. I can pick up words that seem out of place. In fact, words that are perfectly appropriate to the 19th century like Kid and OK, can feel out of place to someone reading an historical. Too modern. I also have some understanding of what it felt like to live in other time periods.
Would I want to go there myself? Well, maybe for a weekend (which I have) but I wouldn't want to live there. Besides giving me a feel for what it was like to live in past times, it also gives me a great appreciation for what I have now. Among my favorites are a washing machine and my local classical music station.
I hope I give good advice to the authors whose work I comment on.