Narrative structure * Characterisations * Realistic dialogue *
Plot credibility * Emotional pull * Marketability *
Punctation * Spelling * Grammar * Syntax
It's now the norm for professional authors to use an editorial consultancy for appraisals. For unpublished authors, most of the major publishers have closed their doors to unsolicited manuscripts, so many have turned to self-publishing or try to get an agent to take them on. Out of around 100-250 unsoliciteds a publisher receives each week, only one or two a year are considered to be potentially marketable. Trying to find an agent is harder than finding a publisher. Agents are now receiving more unsolicited manuscripts than ever before.
Have your manuscript appraised first and use a professional writer or editorial consultant, someone with years of experience in the business and who understands just what agents and publishers are looking for. Someone like me? That's right, I'm just the person you need.
I will look at your writing objectively and help to bring your work up to a more marketable standard before you approach an agent or publisher and help put you ahead of the competition. If you're going for self-publishing, your work still needs to be in tiptop shape before you offer it to the paying public.
Not only do I give next-step advice but my appraisals include tip sheets to strengthen individual weaknesses and I'm just at the end of a phone if you have any problems or questions.
I read and report on:
I don't accept:
The first step is to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org telling me what sort of project you would like me to appraise and how many words it makes. I will then be able to give you a quote. (See Fees at the bottom of the page)
If you accept the quote, please confirm this. Then download the Writer's Questionnaire on the Appraisals sub-page, fill it in, sign and date it and include it with your manuscript. It will tell me all about your project and your writing background and this will be very helpful. Next, send me the following package:
Please read the sub-page about presenting your manuscript before sending it off.
If you have any problems or queries, don't hesitate to email me or call on 0161 445 0159. Leave a message if you get a message taker and I will get back to you as soon as possible.
I will send you a receipt for your manuscript by email.
I will read your manuscript, correcting spelling, punctuation, syntax and grammar on the hard copy and write comments in the margin. After the second reading I will write a report covering the following points:
Some reports may include an Appendix containing tip sheets to help weak areas and/or next-step advice, suggestions for further reading or writing courses with contacts.
The report will be emailed to you within about six weeks. They can be anything from six to ten pages long. The manuscript will be returned to you by snail mail. If you forget to send return postage, I will contact you and wait until I receive this. You will be contacted if there are any unseen delays.
Electronic submissions are sometimes acceptable but because of the extra work involved, they cost more than hard copy manuscripts. Details will be sent with my quote.
Fees for reading and reporting on manuscripts are £19 per hour.
Click on the Testimonials button to see how clients rate my manuscript appraisal service. And remember that this is a personal service between me and my clients. Unlike most reading agencies, I will not farm out your manuscript to other readers. I do not head up a team of readers - I am personally responsible for your manuscript's progress from the moment it is received to the moment it is returned to you.
It may be that you're not looking for a publisher and simply want a few copies to give to friends and family. Perhaps you have knowledge of a specific subject and there is a niche market for it that is too small for a publisher. Or it may not be possible for you to find a publisher and you're anxious to see your writing in print.
Many people are self-publishing their books. Keyword Editorial works with self-publishers who will publish your book efficiently and economically. At the end of your appraisal, we can put you in touch with them.
Manuscripts must be original, unpublished works of the author(s) or sent with their permission. Authors must be over 18 or include written permission from a parent or guardian. Confidentiality will be assured. The owner should retain originals of all work submitted. Any loss or damage to the documents will not be the responsibility of Keyword Editorial Services or their employees.
It may be that an appraisal isn't what you're after and that you are looking for someone to edit your writing. You can choose from light copy-editing, copy-editing plus or full edit and rewrite. Details and fees for copy-editing can be found on the Copy-editing page.
Research and Writing Books
For researching and/or writing books the fee is from £275 per 1,000 words inclusive.
If you are looking for someone to mentor you through a full-scale writing project from start to finish or to help you out of a block you're in, charges are £50 per hour. I am available by phone and email at pre-arranged times.