Writing consultancy – detailed critiques

I regret that I am not currently taking more clients as my diary is full with my own writing deadlines and events. Sorry.

“Thanks so much for your insightful, thorough and hugely helpful report. I thought I’d better check in so that you know I haven’t killed myself!”

“Thanks so much again for what seems like an entire course in creative writing’s worth in one report!” “To be honest, Nicola, I cried. I cried with relief that now, at last, I know what’s wrong. And you’ve shown me how to deal with it.” “I have re-read many websites, blogs, covering the points your critique made. I had read most of them before, but seeing your pointed comments placed alongside my own work, had a marked effect. It was as if I was reading the previously studied advice for the first time.” “I am deeply impressed by the detail of your report and annotations.”

Pen2Publication is my deliberately small and highly focused writers’ consultancy, through which I read and critique manuscripts or submissions. I set Pen2Publication up several years ago and it has since helped many dozens of writers improve their manuscripts and their writing ability. Several writers have achieved agency and/or publishing deals. Agents and publishers also value the quality of my advice and its honesty.

I take on very few clients, usually no more than one per month. If you think you would benefit from a professional, honest (very honest!) critique, with super-detailed comments, advice and suggestions, do contact me and see if I have availability within your time-scale. First, though, please read the rest of the information on this page.

Critique of full manuscript? 

I no longer offer this service as the amount of time it takes makes it too expensive for most writers. Also, from long experience, a critique of the first few thousand words is what most people need, as the same mistakes usually continue throughout the book. I also consider the concept and marketability of the whole MS, as part of the critique.

I offer two services:

  1. Critique of partial manuscript: a professional evaluation of your writing, based on the first 10,000 words.  It doesn’t matter what stage you’re at – from halfway through first draft to the eleventh revision after rejection. Based on the first 10,000 or 4,000  words, I can identify the problems or issues with your writing, including story-telling techniques, prose style and whether there is a likely market; I can also give pointers as to problems with problems with characterisation, suspense and plot. By adding lots of comments to your text and identifying examples of everything I say in the report, I give you the tools to improve and edit the rest of the MS yourself. It is very educational! Writers have been amazed at what they’ve learnt.
  2. Perfect Submission:  detailed advice about how to perfect your submission to agent or publisher. You send your draft submission (covering letter, synopsis and first three chapters) and I show you what’s wrong and help you get it right; I can show you how to adapt it for subsequent approaches. NB: no submission can be right for all agents and publishers – each approach must be tailored – but it’s possible to create a version which you can adapt as needed.

Notes:

  • I focus on writers looking for publication in the UK, Australia, NZ, SA, and other non-US English-speaking countries. That’s where my expertise lies.
  • There can be no promises of publication and to make them would be unwise and unprofessional. Publication happens through a mixture of talent, perseverance and luck. I can nurture your talent, focus your perseverance and help you make your own luck. But I cannot create any of those things.
  • It is essential that you truly want an honest critique and to know what is wrong, and how to improve your chances of publication.
  • A critique is not a line-edit. I do something close to a line edit of the first pages (usually around 30); this gives you the tools to spot your own bad habits later!

Fees

All fees include a reasonable (in my opinion) amount of subsequent email correspondence, sufficient to ensure that you understand the advice. I aim for 100% satisfaction, and clients comment on the exceptional detail in the report and in my attention to you before and afterwards. All advice, tuition and reports are done by email. I prefer to receive your MSS as email attachments and I do not print them out, so there are no printing costs. If you want to send something by post, that’s fine but you need to include return postage. Please note: with all these services, I want you to understand fully what I can and can’t do for you, so we would discuss everything by email before deciding to proceed.

1. Critique of partial manuscript 

A detailed critique of the first 10k words: £390.

Or a detailed critique of the first 4k words: £290. (You would still send me the 10k words, in case I wanted to look ahead, but the crits would be on the first 4k only.)

For children’s picture books and/or material under 1000 words, please ask for a quote.

2. Perfect Submission

£250 – I give a detailed report on every aspect of the covering letter and synopsis; I also read the first ten pages (roughly) of your sample chapters, make editorial comments on the first few pages and assess whether the sample writing lives up to (or exceeds!) the covering letter and synopsis.

3. Combination of the above – i.e. critique of 10,000/4,000 words and the submission

For 10k words + covering letter + synopsis: £490 – representing a saving of £150.

For 4k words + covering letter + synopsis: £390 – also saving you £150

There is no VAT.

If you would like to discuss the possibility of hiring my services, do fill in this Enquiry Form and email it to n@nicolamorgan.co.uk  You commit yourself to nothing by doing so. We will then discuss how I can best help you and if I think I am not the right person for you, I will say so.

I look forward to working with you!