Manuscript Reviews

What is a Manuscript Review?

A manuscript review is a big picture look at  either all or part of your book project. I will read for things like concept and content clarity, communication of ideas, organization and grammar/style in general.

It could be considered part of a developmental or substantive editing process.

It does not involve correcting errors or marking up grammatical mistakes.

When Should You Get One?

Generally, this type of review is done fairly early in the process after a first or second draft, or even part way into one of those stages. Having an outside/non-biased pair of eyes take a look even at the half way point can help you determine if you’re on the right path, or if you need to make some changes that will help you save both time and effort.

Why Should You Pay for a Manuscript Review?

1. You do not know anyone with the expertise to edit without bias or to the expert level you need

2. You are serious about your project  and want your book/report/course to represent you as the professional you are. You are open to learning and want your writing to shine.

Why Should You Hire Me?

1. I have been a freelance writer since 1999 with around 200 articles to my credit on and offline

2. If it’s important to you, I have a degree in English

3. One of my areas of expertise/special talents is being able to work in the big picture realm of ideas. Some people are great at tiny details and can find every last comma error.

That’s not me. I will find a lot more than some people, but the fine tooth comb  isn’t my thing.

What I can do is understand where you’re going with an idea and make sure you end up where you belong. Again, this means  I will make sure your writing is clear, keeps the reader’s attention and accomplishes delivering the message  you want it to deliver.

*Something Else You Must Understand

First, if you’re just wanting to write a book quickly to stick it up on Amazon and make a few bucks, we aren’t going to be a good match.

As I noted above,  I expect serious authors to strive to excel at what they do and to strive to produce books that reflect that effort.

What does that mean? When do this kind of edit/review, it won’t be like your best friend who will tell you everything is great. I will look for issues and tell it like it is, assuming your readers want a solid, high quality product.

What does high quality mean?

First of all, it is important to note that it doesn’t mean perfect. Few books are perfect,  including those published by the biggest names out there. What it does mean is you are concerned about typos, grammar, design and the overall reader experience and you want that experience to be top notch all around. Yes, the idea of quality is subjective to a point, but there are still clear levels of distinction between okay/good enough and paying enough attention to details to make a difference.

If you feel your audience isn’t concerned about such things, or you feel your writing is what is is and customers can take or leave it, honestly, I am not the editor for you.

I’m not saying you are wrong in that approach at all, maybe that’s right for your audience, it just isn’t my approach and we likely won’t see eye to eye.

My guiding principle is there are hundreds of thousands of books out there, most people are looking  for the good stuff, let’s create some of that together.


How Can We Work Together?

This kind of edit can come after a first or second draft, or even when you think you are very close to where you want to be with the work.

Getting things rolling is easy. You contact me either by email, my contact page, or even on Facebook if you’d like and let me know 2 things:

1. The topic/subject matter of your book. A paragraph or two summary is fine.

2. How many words it is.

3. We’ll chat back and forth a bit to figure out your needs, the time frame,  if the relationship will be a good fit for both of us because I want to enjoy having you as a client as much as I hope you want to enjoy having me as your editor/consultant.

We’ll also decide if you are going to give me a hard copy or if we are going to work digitally (there are pros and cons both ways, we’ll figure out what will work best).

If all systems are a go, we will discuss payment.


At the moment, my rate is pretty simple to calculate:

Rates start at $1.50 per 250 words (which is a common word count for a nonfiction page).
So for example, at 100 pages x 250 words = $150

**If you’d like to have me look at less than the full book that’s perfectly okay too. Sometimes just working with a representative sample of  pages (half or a quarter of the book) will get you enough feedback to keep you on a good track. Once you have that, the full manuscript can be reviewed later.

**My rate will be adjusted for drafts that need significantly more work. We will discuss this based on a representative sample before any agreements are made.

If I set a rate based on a sample and then find the rest of the manuscript needs more work than anticipated, our agreement may  need to be renegotiated as far as time, cost or both.

If we work in hard copy, this will include mailing it back to you.

What is it worth to you to have an experienced pair of eyes review your work and help you make it the best it can be? What will it cost you if you don’t?

Ready to Go?

Contact me either by email cpickett (at) or
via my contact page.

I look forward to serving you and to making  your book the absolute best it can be!


It is important to know one other thing. I will not edit work that conflict with my values and Christian faith. This means I will not read anything considered “adult” in nature, anything that is violent, hate filled etc. At my discretion, I will also turn down projects that I simply cannot support or do not agree with because I want to be able to whole-heartedly support and recommend the authors I work with.