Manuscript Critique

Candid, constructive editorial critiques for complete manuscripts, book proposals, and unfinished works-in-progress

Request a Quote

Overview of Services

The first goal of our manuscript critique services is to provide candid, constructive, and thorough feedback on your manuscript’s condition and its literary and commercial potential. The idea isn’t to callously judge a work or its writer but to give you a professional book editor’s perspective on what works, what doesn’t work or could work better, and what you might consider doing to give your manuscript the best chance of marketplace success. This feedback helps inform your revision process and bring clarity to specific goals and objectives intended to improve the quality of your story and its writing.

The second goal of these services is to assess your manuscript’s editorial needs and what kind of further help, if any, would be most beneficial after you’ve revised with your editor’s feedback in mind. Once we’ve read your manuscript, provided written feedback, and discussed that with you by phone or email, you’ll have a much better sense of where your work stands in relation to relevant industry standards, what you need to work on, and what editorial course may be appropriate.

Further information about critique services pricing, turnaround time, and coverage is available via links at right (desktop) or below (on mobile devices) or by contacting our author services director Ross Browne at the Tucson office.

GET STARTED

Quicklinks

Written assessment of your manuscript’s first 10 pages, addressing craft, market, and overall effectiveness. Includes follow-up consultation with your editor by phone or email.

$75 for first 2,500 words

More Info

Editorial memo assessing commercial and literary potential, overall condition of your manuscript, and areas for improvement. Includes follow-up consultation with your editor by phone or email.

$.01 per word for most manuscripts

More Info

A hybrid of manuscript critique, developmental editing, and revision guidance via editorial memorandum and margin comments in manuscript text.

$.014 per word for most manuscripts

More Info

Recommended Reading

  • Nonfiction

Evaluating Nonfiction: One Editor’s Approach What can set your nonfiction manuscript up for success ... or doom it to the reject pile

|Comments Off on Evaluating Nonfiction: One Editor’s Approach What can set your nonfiction manuscript up for success ... or doom it to the reject pile

[by Peter Gelfan] Fiction lives or dies by the author's storytelling and writing skills (and perseverance and some luck). For nonfiction, then, one might assume that likewise, an interesting topic well elucidated will do the [...]

Jonathan Balcombe on Writing, Editing, and Getting Published A bestselling nonfiction author shares his approach to editing and mentoring others

|Comments Off on Jonathan Balcombe on Writing, Editing, and Getting Published A bestselling nonfiction author shares his approach to editing and mentoring others

[guest post by Jonathan Balcombe] My career as a biology student, animal advocate, editor and author has required me to write at every stage: essays, lab reports, a thesis and a dissertation, peer-reviewed journal articles, [...]

The First Duty of a Manuscript Critique Why candor matters and what you can expect from your editor if your manuscript isn't very good

|Comments Off on The First Duty of a Manuscript Critique Why candor matters and what you can expect from your editor if your manuscript isn't very good

[by Ross Browne] The first thing I'd put on the table in connection with how we handle very flawed manuscripts can, I hope, go without saying. And that's that we never want to be discouraging [...]

“…coherence in the world [an author] creates is constituted of two concepts he holds, which may be in conflict: one is his world view, his sense of the way the world is; and the other is his sense of morality, the way the world ought to be.”

Rust Hills