Before I began building my list of clients as a literary agent, I worked as an academic editor, a freelance book editor, and a professional writer. I also write fiction and have had three novels published under a pen name, by an imprint of HarperCollins. I know how it feels to be in the querying trenches. I understand what writers go through and how much work it takes.
As an agent, I get an average of around 30 query letters a day. I see merit in a lot of the projects that land in my inbox, but ultimately I’m looking for manuscripts I can a) fall in love with and b) sell. I pass on most of the query letters I receive, either because the premise doesn’t hook me enough (this is subjective and every agent is looking for different things), or because the writing doesn’t engage me as much as I want it to (also subjective). Agents want to be HOOKED, like every reader does.
When a query stands out from the crowd because the premise sounds intriguing—and salable—and the writing is compelling and makes me want to keep reading, I’ll request the full manuscript. I pass on most of these, for a variety of reasons. I might love the voice, but the pacing feels too slow. Or maybe too much of the book feels like first draft writing. Or the characters don’t come to life on the page for me. Or there’s not enough plot. It all comes down to keeping the reader turning pages.
When I fall in love with a manuscript enough to offer to represent it, there are almost always elements that still need to be worked on before the manuscript is ready to submit to editors. I provide detailed feedback and editorial notes to my clients about the areas of their manuscripts I think need to be addressed and improved on. I work with my authors to thoroughly edit each manuscript so it’s as good and as polished as it can be before it’s submitted to publishers.
I also offer this service to editorial clients, for writers who have completed a manuscript (or have a work in progress) and are ready for informed, thorough feedback as they prepare to submit their work to industry professionals (or to self-publish).
WHAT I OFFER:
Query letter and first ten pages: Critique and edit
Getting ready to query agents? Have you already tried, but are finding you’re getting more rejections than requests? I might be able to give you some insight as to why, and help you change that.
I'll offer feedback about how to improve and polish your query letter and the first ten pages of your manuscript. I'll make sure you're presenting a concise, well-constructed, error-free query letter. I'll offer suggestions about how to improve your pitch and the opening pages of your manuscript.
Clean, well-presented work stands out from the crowd. $120
Looking for feedback? Getting ready to show your book to industry professionals? Have you had requests from agents, but then they passed? I can offer informed advice.
I'll read your manuscript, making comments throughout, using track changes. I'll comment on inconsistencies, problems with continuity, and other developmental and structural suggestions that arise. I'll provide a 1-2 page report highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of your book, including feedback on plot, pacing, structure, voice, style, and character development. I'll let you know what I think works and what needs attention. I'll offer my opinion about the marketability of your project.
Up to 80,000 words: $650; 80,000 to 110,000 words: $750
To find out more:
100% of my editorial clients have found the services helpful and reasonably priced for the amount of feedback given. Many have gone on to get offers of representation and publication.
Please note that most of my time is dedicated to the work I do as a literary agent, so I can only take on select editorial projects.
I use PayPal. I ask for the first half up front and the second half when my editorial clients are 100% satisfied with the service.
Please do not seek literary representation through this form. If you’d like to query me, click here.