At what stage in writing do you ask for feedback on your new story?

  • After writing a plot outline?
  • After the first draft?
  • After the second draft?
  • After you polish it for the public?

What kind of feedback do you like to get (and don't want) after each stage?

At what stage do you ask people to proofread? (As opposed to editing.)

2 Answers 2


My husband is also a writer, so I'm constantly bouncing ideas off of him throughout my researching and plotting phases. Usually by the time I'm writing, I don't say much about story changes. But once I start writing, no one looks at my work until I've edited it a few times on my own. Then my hubby sees it, I edit it again, and then I send it out to beta readers and my writers group.

I have found that if I ask for a lot of people's opinions throughout the entire process, ideas get muddied in my head and I have a hard time remembering why I had something the way I did, and then when I change it, suddenly 200 pages down the road, I remember why, and now I've got to go back and fix it all over again.

But I have found it helpful to bounce ideas off of one person's head that I trust and that knows my story pretty intimately.

As for proofreading, I have a copyeditor's eye, so my story is getting proofread every time I read through it. I also have my writers group to go through proofreading for me, which comes after the story's been written and edited several times.


Yes, you can ask for feedback at any and all of those stages.

The feedback which is helpful at any stage is "This works and here's why" and "This doesn't work and here's why." The "here's why" is the MOST IMPORTANT part of feedback. If your reader can only say "I don't like this," it's a waste of everyone's time.

Proofreading should be done at later stages — second draft and public polish.

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