The Alpha Reader and Doubt’s Arrival


It really started Saturday. The rocket scientist finished a book and picked up my manuscript.  A few hours later, I noticed he had set it down and crawled between the sheets to watch some TV in bed. I checked his reader, where I had put a copy of Naked Alliances for his convenience. He had only read the first two chapters.

Me: So it wasn’t intriguing enough to make you want to keep reading.

RS: I’ve been reading all day. It is fine. I need a little break from reading.

Me: Okay, I don’t want to rush you. (But really I do.)

Sunday he was reading it again. He pointed out a couple of typos and told me I needed to add back a small scene I had taken out. He liked it better with a little foreshadowing of something that is to come later in the book. I made some notes on the paper manuscript. Later in the evening, as I set supper on the table, I noticed he had quietly read up to chapter ten.

Me: You’re up to chapter ten.

RS: Yeah. It’s moving right along.

Me: So, you wanna talk about the book now or wait until you’re done.

RS: I’ll wait. I’ve highlighted a couple of places where things seem a bit disjointed. We’ll see how it all comes together.

Me: *sigh* (The only word that I really heard was disjointed.)

When he went to bed last night, I saw he had gotten up to chapter sixteen. I followed him to the bedroom.

Me: It’s not ready for publication, is it?

RS: No, but it can get there.

Today, after he left for work, I looked in his reader. Naked Alliances is in there with Tim Baker, Michael Connelly, Jonathan Kellerman, Tim Dorsey, John Sanford, Tony Hillerman, Sue Grafton, and Carl Hiaasen. Dozens and dozens of books by these prolific authors.

About that time, I heard a ruckus outside. The yard cat, Boozer, was going nuts. A package had arrived UPS all the way from Idaho. Yes, Doubt is here. The Raven from Entertaining Stories. Lisa and Craig packed him up and sent him to me because he was pecking up Craig’s left brain. So now he is here to work on mine for a while. I thought it would do Craig and Lisa, the Robot, some good to have a little vacation from Doubt. Craig needs some reviews. He doesn’t need Doubt around right now. If you are looking for a couple of quick, clever reads, look up C.S. Boyack on Amazon, here and here, and give him a try.

I brought Doubt inside and took him out of the bucket. Lisa had packed him in there with some water. He was nestled on a bed of peanut shells. When I lifted the lid, he started flying around the room, dodging the ceiling fan blades. He lit on Sunny’s cage, our little yellow cockatiel. Sunny began to sing. Doubt didn’t seem impressed.

The rocket scientist had to go up to Ocala today, so he’ll have a long drive home from work through rush hour traffic. I hope he is up to company. I knew Doubt was coming, but I don’t think the RS did.


I don’t know what to do with myself right now. Wait to do edits. Start on the next manuscript, Book Two in the series. Or, just hang out with Doubt a while on the back porch. It is screened in. There’s a nice perch out there that once belonged to a parrot we had. I could teach him how to talk southern. Maybe we should just go to the beach for a couple of days. Doubt could hang out with the gulls.



* I have to add a note: RS did laugh out loud a couple of times as he was reading. That’s not a bad thing. I had  few attempts at humor in there, so it must have punched him a little, like it was supposed to. At least I am hoping that is why he was laughing 🙂

17 thoughts on “The Alpha Reader and Doubt’s Arrival

  1. I feel like slapping him upside the head ;). That’s awful to leave you on pins and needles, although I realize dumb stuff like going to work does intrude. I bet he loves it, and that the places that still need work are minimal revisions.


  2. Don’t doubt yourself too much. That’s the downside of Doubt the raven. On the other hand, he can make you second guess in the right places too. If I’d have known there was a beach involved, I’d have come to Florida and left Doubt home.


  3. It’s always difficult waiting for that first feedback, isn’t it? I try to busy myself with other things, which usually isn’t hard given I always have something to do (as I’m sure you do!), but it’s always front and center in our minds, isn’t it? Sigh.


    1. I wanted to go to the beach, but the weather has been stormy…not a good time to be out there. I have been fiddling around with some starter paragraphs for the next book. It is good to see you. Thanks for stopping by 🙂


      1. I always enjoy seeing what you’re up to, even on my blog break. 🙂

        I had company this weekend and have been off social media for the past three days (for the most part). Feels like three years!


      2. Oh! I know the feeling. Lightening zapped me and I was only down for a day. Got it up and running and then took a half day to back up files. I feel so bad for Charles Yallowitz. His has been down all week.


  4. Waiting for feedback is a horrible time 😀 I try my best to distract myself with anything, but it never works. It’s worse when you know the person reading it so you kinda look over their shoulder just waiting and looking for reactions.

    Great post! Definitely know these feelings 🙂


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