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Manuscript Critique

Focusing on the big picture

Why does my novel need a manuscript critique?

For writers operating on a budget, my manuscript critique provides a lower-cost alternative to a development edit. As with a development edit, the purpose is to address the big picture issues that will form the foundations of your novel.

These include:

  • Theme (s)

  • Plot and sub-plots

  • Characterisation

  • Dialogue

  • Point of View

  • Structure

  • Pacing

  • Jeopardy

  • Tone

  • Chronology (e.g. linear, flashbacks)

A manuscript critique should be carried out after an early draft of the novel to ensure the foundations for a successful story are firmly in place. The aim is to pave the way for a gripping read that will engage readers with a riveting plot, absorbing characters, powerful dialogue, vibrant style and so on.

At this stage there is no focus on micro-editing issues such as grammar and punctuation – it would be a waste of time and money to address these areas when much of the text may be subsequently rewritten.

The overriding objective of development editing is to instil the writer with the awareness, knowledge and understanding that will empower and inspire them to refine their narrative to produce the basis of an enthralling novel that intrigue and captivate readers.  

What will I receive?

I will produce an extensive editorial report pinpointing the strengths and weaknesses of your manuscript (in relation to the areas mentioned above) with practical and detailed advice on how to bring about improvements.

Unlike with a development edit, there will be no notes on the manuscript itself.


The aim of the manuscript critique is to strengthen your storytelling ability to enable you to realise the full potential of your novel.

The knowledge you gain through the manuscript critique should greatly enhance your narrative skills – to the benefit of not only the novel in question but also your future writing career.


The manuscript critique will be provided as a Microsoft Word document. Please supply all of your novel in one document.

How much does a manuscript critique cost?

All of my prices are based on the rates suggested by the Chartered Institute for Editors and Proofreaders.

As the time taken to complete the project will depend on the amount of work involved, please send me 1,000 words from the middle of your novel to enable me to provide a quote.

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