Manuscript Evaluations

Manuscript evaluation: Why do it? Why now?

Writing is art. Writing is craft. Writing is transforming audiences. Writing is a monumental chore. Writing is a great privilege. Writing needs a second eye, a preview.

It is too hard to see your own work. 

Writing longs for an impartial judge. Your mother is always going to say you’re brilliant (unless you’re writing about her!) 

Writing is about truth. The subconscious mind appears on the page and sometimes that apparition manifests unbeknownst to the writer.  Sharing your writing is like working with a word medium, a seer. 

 Sometimes it’s about clarity, about broadening your vision, about remembering details. Sometimes it’s about mixed metaphors and thinning out the cluttered and overburdened sentences.  Sometimes it’s about suggesting a ready structure, imposing order on a disordered assortment of images and scenes.

Writing is about slowing down time and racing across time. It is compression and expansion. It is about being sensitive and about being sure. 

Working with a manuscript consultant is always about serving the story, not the author. Scary? Yes.  Does it make better writing? Again, yes. 

A manuscript consultant won’t tell you what to do, they will ask you to consider a different approach, offer a new perspective, call for enhanced material and they will always tell you why. 

Everything is up to the author, for the work belongs to the creator and there is no other way it can be.

Ultimately the story is in your hands. Ownership is all. But lending your text to someone who reads deeply without knowing a thing about you,  is the best way for the story to shine.

In a climate of shrinking advances, fewer publishing opportunities, and overwhelmed acquisition editors and agents, wouldn’t you rather hit the book industry dance floor with polished prose?  Honoring your work and making it shine must be at the heart of any manuscript consultation.

Trust the process and you will not be disappointed. 

Connect with us HERE if you still have questions about manuscript evaluations.


More about Margaret Macpherson…




Third Verb presents intensive workshop experiences for writers of all skill levels in the Edmonton area.
Edmonton, Alberta