Congratulations! You’ve completed your manuscript and your Aunt Helen thinks it’s terrific. A couple of friends like it, too, but you’re not sure if you’ve covered all your bases or whether the book holds together as tightly as it should. If you believe there’s room for improvement and you’d like specific guidance on how to make the manuscript more compelling, organized or interesting, we recommend one of our professional critiques to aid in your manuscript preparation.
EDITORIAL REVIEW (FOR NONFICTION)
We review your concept and table of contents, organizational structure and a dozen random pages in the manuscript and write a one-page editorial critique sharing our overall impressions and pointing out any significant problems that we see and how they might be solved.
We read your manuscript and write a detailed editorial memorandum that identifies specific areas of the manuscript that would benefit from certain changes and revisions and what those changes should entail.
If your argument strays too far for the reader to follow, we’ll point out the tangents and show you how to stay focused. If your protagonist is more alienating than appealing to readers, we’ll suggest options for adding “softening” touches or reimagining his or her character traits. If you’re entrenched in linear storytelling when your manuscript would be better-served by a theme-driven approach, we’ll suggest an alternative framework.
For nonfiction, the memorandum addresses strengths and weaknesses in content, organization, clarity, style, voice, grammar and effectiveness at reaching the target audience. And novel critiques cover plot, characterization, storytelling, dialogue, style and grammar.
While manuscript evaluations (MEs) can differ in scope and the type of feedback offered, most are in the 10-page range. The ME also includes a 30-minute phone consultation to cover anything that isn’t clear and/or to discuss options for moving forward.
Sample ME excerpts are available by request.
ANNOTATED MANUSCRIPT EVALUATION
An annotated manuscript evaluation addresses the same issues as an ME but includes a briefer editorial memo than an ME does because the bulk of the feedback comes in the form of detailed notes in the body of the manuscript itself. Some writers prefer the immediacy of this approach.
Sample annotated ME excerpts are available by request.