Critique Services

I have been wanting to do this forever! I love critiquing my friends’ manuscripts and sometimes have found myself critiquing 3-4 a month! So, I thought, why not do this on a more professional basis? I’ve decided to offer a manuscript critiquing service!

As many of you who read my blog or follow me on Facebook know, outside of my life as a young adult author, I am a creative writing and literature teacher as well.

Here’s a little about me:

I have two master’s degrees. One is an MA in fiction and the second is an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Outside of writing young adult novels in my professional life, I’ve created and led many creative writing workshops and literature classes.

I am the author of Infinite Days and Stolen Nights published with St. Martin’s Press nationally. I am published in 11 territories around the world and in twenty languages!

Manuscripts I Critique:

I will critique middle grade novels as well as young adult novels.

Age range for middle grade: 8-12

Age range for young adult – 13-18

I may take a new adult novel or adult fiction based on its premise.

I will also take short story collections or individual short stories based on the query.

**I will NOT critique picture books, poetry, or non-fiction.**

My Critique:

I am a holistic reader and don’t believe in prescriptive formulas to critique a manuscript. I believe every manuscript has a voice and intention and I do my best to find the heartbeat of the manuscript. My goal is to help the author’s intentions come through the world and stage of the manuscript.

I also believe deeply that the emotional impact of a manuscript determines its success and will concentrate much of my characterization discussion on the character arc and the emotional journey of your main character.
Some of the elements I might investigate in your manuscript are:

Characterization

Setting

Story Arc

Dialogue

Conflict

Structure

Pacing

Imagery

Voice

 What Comes With Your Critique:

First, when agreeing to have me critique your manuscript you are agreeing to the following idea:

My edits and critiques are subjective. My opinion may not be the same as others and thus what I suggest might be different from another editor or author.

What I can promise is to use my expertise as an educator and published author to provide the best comprehensive feedback.

1. Line edit – This will not be line-by-line copy edit but a complete reading of your manuscript. What I mean by “line edit” is track changes throughout the entire manuscript. This is not a copy edit or a cleanup of your manuscript. I define line edit as a very close reading of your work and an analysis of your style.  I appreciate all different kinds of style and the purpose of the line edit is to provide real time feedback as I read your manuscript.

2. Editorial Letter – This letter will include:

  • An overall discussion of the work.
  • Strengths in the manuscript.
  • Areas in the manuscript that need improvement
  • Questions that I have as a reader and specific suggestions as to how I think you can best revise the manuscript. These questions will focus on areas to improve the manuscript.
  • Craft terms and examples such as: psychic distance, voice, imagery, symbol, etc. I do not expect the author to know all of these terms so I will provide definitions and examples.
  • I will offer examples of current fiction books that will help you revise as well as specific writing craft books and examples so you can further your research and education.
  • The purpose of the letter is to not only critique but to provide the author with new terms and strategies when going into revision. While I cannot guarantee that every letter will require this, it is my hope.

3. One 45 minute phone call or Skype call to discuss the letter and to follow up with any questions you may have.  

4.  Revision Re-read:

  • I want to help you!  If you have found that my services were helpful and would like to have me re-read the manuscript. I will re-read your manuscript when you have revised for 50% off your original price.
  • The Re-Read will include: A full editorial letter concentrating on the revision in the manuscript, further revision techniques, as well as a 45 minute Skype Call.

What I cannot do:

  • Guarantee you publication from my edits.
  • Connect you directly with agents or editors.
  • Write query letters.
  • Copy-edit.
  • Ghost-write.
  • Re-write your book in any form.

How to Submit:

Please e-mail me the following with your query:

  1. Letter:
  • In your letter please tell me if you have submitted this manuscript before.
  • How long have you been writing this manuscript?
  • What are your intentions for this manuscript? Obviously you want to publish, but what is your immediate goal? Agent? A conference? An editor?
  1. Word Count, this helps me determine the cost of the manuscript.
  2. Genre
  3. A little something about you!

**PLEASE DO NOT SEND YOUR MANUSCRIPT UNTIL WE HAVE AGREED ON THE TERMS OF THE CRITIQUE**

FORMATTING FOR MANUSCRIPTS (when requested):

  • In Microsoft word .doc or .docx or pages (Mac program)
  • I will NOT accept .pdf as I cannot track change in pdf.
  • 12-point font
  • Double spaced formatting
  • Page numbers
  • Times New Roman

Turnaround Time:

  • 4-6 Weeks, 6 week maximum.
  • The agreement between the author and me will have a due date. I will make sure to return the manuscript, letter, and line-edit by this date. The call will follow in a timely fashion directly after.

Rates for Manuscript Critiques:

  • I will accept an installment of two payments but will not return the manuscript until all payments are accepted.
  • All payments must be made through PayPal

$600 for novels through 50,000 words

$800 for novels through 75,000 words

$1000 for novels through 100,000 words

Rates for Experienced Writers:

Are you a published writer who needs a critique before submitting a manuscript to your agent or publisher? Are you an MFA graduate who is getting together your manuscript to query an agent? Perhaps you’ve been out of the writing world for a while and want to dust off an old manuscript?

Contact me with rate inquiries.