Have you ever looked through a scope, whether it's a telescope, microscope, scope on a gun, or even binoculars? Well if you have, have you ever had the problem where you aren't standing in exactly the right spot and there are black circles that take over the lens? I have and I hate that it makes me feel blind!
My husband was using scopes as an analogy the other night. Of course it wasn't a writing analogy, but it totally applied to using beta readers and critique groups. I love when I can connect my conversations to writing :)
Here is how he explained it to me. There are two lenses on a gun scope. You have to look just right through the both of them in order to line the target up and hit your goal. If you take away one of the lenses, your aim wouldn't be exact.
Now I will apply it to beta readers and critique groups. If my scope, or writing, was just looked at by me, I might not see everything that it needs to hit my goal. But when the others read it, it brings another lens into play and the target is lined up more accurately.
You see? We NEED others to read our work so we know what's missing. Of course we all love what we write, but at least for me, it doesn't always make sense to everyone else. Their opinions help me line up the target so I can reach my goal! Isn't it just fabulous?
My last thought. It's important to use a scope that fits what you're doing. Don't try to use a gun scope on your telescope. It won't work. Find beta readers and a critique group that can relate to what you write. Get a great scope and get a clear picture!