Can a Lover Beta a Story?

“Dinner, Fen.”

I reluctantly set the laptop aside and came to the table. He’d made pasta and a salad, and he was pouring wine into glasses as I slid into my chair. “Looks good, babe.”

“Where are you in the process?”

“Looking at the changes AJ suggested. The more I get right now, the less work the editor has to do once it’s accepted by someone.” 

“Do you have any doubts about it?” He handed me a slice of garlic bread.

“What, having it accepted? Always.” I’ve had six stories published and no rejections. That’s scary. It’s like waiting for the other shoe to drop. I peppered the pasta and started to eat. “AJ hates this one.”

His fork paused halfway to his mouth. “What?”

The look of shock on his face was priceless. I wished I had the camera so I could take a pic of it.

“Hates it. Despises it. Said it’s the worst piece of shit I’ve ever written.” I couldn’t look at him, or I’d break into laughter.

After a moment, his fork completed the journey to his mouth. After calmly chewing and swallowing, he said, “Not possible. That guy loves everything you do.”

Snorting, I sipped the wine. “Actually, he doesn’t. We disagree about plenty of things.”

“Right.” He twirled up another mouthful of pasta. “He loved it, didn’t he?”

“Well…sort of. Yeah.”


I grinned at him. “Sorry, couldn’t help it. He had lots of suggestions, if that makes you feel any better.”

“I wish you’d let me beta a story once.”

“Honey, you love everything I do, even when it really is shit. AJ isn’t afraid to tell me when things need work. I need that.”

He sighed and dived into his salad. He’d asked several times and I’d always deflected him, but he just wanted to help.

“Okay, you can beta this one. I need another opinion. Can you do it quickly? I’d like to submit it by the weekend.”

He looked up sharply. “Really?” Smiling, he popped a cherry tomato into his mouth. “I’ll do it after dinner.”

It was so easy to make him happy. I mentally kicked myself for denying this to him. He could be good or bad; what did it matter? Rising half out of my chair, I leaned over to give him a kiss.

“What was that for?” he asked, eyes sparkling.

Shrugging, I forked up crispy romaine. “Do I need a reason to smooch you?”

“…No.” He had the sweetest smile on his face.

“Well, then…”

The rest of dinner was exceedingly pleasant.


About Fenraven

Fenraven happily lives in south Florida, where it is really hot most of the year. Find him on Twitter, Google +, and Facebook by searching on 'fenraven'.
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9 Responses to Can a Lover Beta a Story?

  1. Love it!!! I have an AJ too who points out my problems… sadly i need to listen to him more… thank you for an interesting read

  2. Theo i am thinking your AJ and my AJ might be the same AJ but even if He isnt they both are truly Darlings and i know without my AJ’s kick to the pants i would have given up a long time ago…

    AJ Rose Something tells me you darling are a force to behold… Thank you both for brightening my morning

    • AJ Rose says:

      What a sweetheart you are! I am not the same AJ as yours. I only beta for Fen right now.

      As for the force to behold… Fen’s always telling me I have too much of a mouth on me. Same thing, right? Heh.

      • There aint nothing wrong with having a Mouth on you!!!!! I have one on me and it often gets me into trouble… Also sorry for confusing my AJ’s *winks* I blame lack of morning coffee :o)

    • I know I depend on AJ quite a lot. In fact, he caught something in my latest that I TOTALLY missed, and it was bad enough that I flushed a becoming pink color. Heh.

      (AJ, it was the parking garage thing; can’t believe I didn’t see that!)

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