You've Written Your Novel - Now What?

Polish Your Manuscript for Publication with a Detailed Critique from a Professional Editor

 

When You Type “The End,” Your Manuscript’s Journey is Only Beginning

Whether you’re thinking of querying agents, approaching publishers, or becoming an indie author, you’re going to want your story to be at its best before releasing it into the world.

Some authors simply proofread their first draft and call it a day. Then, they wonder why agents aren’t accepting their pitches. Why publishers are turning them down. Why their book is getting lackluster Amazon reviews.

The truth is, there’s more to revising a novel than simply checking for spelling and grammar errors. If your plot is filled with holes, your pacing is off, or your characters are unbelievable, your story isn’t going to resonate with your readers.

That’s Why a Professional Manuscript Critique Can Make All the Difference

Hi, I’m Julie M. Rodriguez. Over the years, I’ve edited and proofread more than 30 novels for commercial publication — so when it comes to helping writers develop their stories, I’ve been around the block a few times. I copyedit manuscripts for Curiosity Quills Press, as well as helping independent authors prepare their own work.

What many writers don’t realize is that editing and proofreading are the final stages of the revision process. Before editing can really be useful, it’s important to get feedback from readers to help tighten up the story, eliminate areas of confusion, and ensure the characters’ motivations make sense.

There’s a lot you can learn from a volunteer reader: how to structure a compelling story. How to fill in plot holes. How to flesh out characters so that they truly seem to come alive. But the one thing that only a professional can tell you is what editors and agents will look for when they’re reading your manuscript for the first time.

I've Helped Dozens of Writers Polish Their Work for Publication

Here's what a few of them have to say:

I have been a language arts teacher and professional writer for 22 years.  It's extremely rare and quite humbling when I come across a student who knows the English language far better than I do.  When someone half my age can edit my own stories and articles like an old pro, catching errors I never would have seen, in both content and mechanics. Julie Rodriguez is that special person.  I have trusted her with the most important documents of my career and she's never let me down.

Miriam Darnell

Founder, Creative Writing Solutions and Druidawn Creations

I enlisted Julie's help in editing a 110,000 word speculative fiction novel. Not only was she prompt and very professional, her edits really helped to polish a rough slab of fiction into a publishable piece. What's great about Julie is her ability to see far into a novel and really strengthen the architecture of the story. Her overall editing was fantastic, but her line-edits also clarified my prose, allowing for a tight story line to shine through. Her keen eye reconstructed many an awkward phrase and created a flow that other editors can't seem to accomplish.

M.K. Sauer

Author, "Star-Crossed: The Confounding Calamities of Byron the Cad and Marietta the Zombie"

Julie Rodriguez was no less than instrumental in bringing my first book to life. Not only is she easy to work with and quick to boot, she does a good job of actually understanding your work and tailoring her editing style to what you need, rather than forcing it into some preconceived notion of what's expected. She's all about making your work into its highest and most idealized self. She's fair and honest and will come down with the might (metaphorical) pen to make corrections if your work needs it.

Jesse Baruffi

Author, "Otto Von Trapezoid and the Empress of Thieves"

When You Request a Manuscript Critique, Here’s What You’ll Get

After I’ve read your manuscript, I’ll send you a detailed, chapter-by-chapter report with actionable advice on how to improve your novel – giving it the best chance at a good first impression with readers, agents, and acquisitions editors.

Accepting Paypal, Paypal Credit, Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover

(Is your manuscript over 85,000 words? Contact me for a custom quote.)

 

Recent Editing Projects

Here are just a few of the novels I've worked on.

The Dreamwalker Diaries by Jen Estes

I've edited the first two novels in Jen's ongoing series, "Fifteen" and "Sixteen" for Curiosity Quills Press.

Homunculus and the Cat by Nathan Croft

I proofread Nathan's novel for typos and formatting to prepare it for publication through Curiosity Quills Press.

The Faraday Files by Kate McIntyre

I've edited and proofread the first two books in Kate's ongoing series, "The Deathsniffer's Assistant" and "The Timeseer's Gambit" for Curiosity Quills Press.

The Faraday Files by Kate McIntyre

I've edited and proofread the first two books in Kate's ongoing series, "The Deathsniffer's Assistant" and "The Timeseer's Gambit" for Curiosity Quills Press.

The Unquiet Dead by Chris Dubecki

I proofread Chris' novel for typos and formatting to prepare it for publication through Curiosity Quills Press.

Star-Crossed by M.K. Sauer

I edited M.K. Sauer's comedy horror novel "Star-Crossed: The Confounding Calamities of Byron the Cad and Marietta the Zombie" for self publication on Amazon.

Fairy Keeper by Amy Bearce

I proofread Amy's novel for typos and formatting to prepare it for publication through Curiosity Quills Press.

Otto Von Trapezoid by Jesse Baruffi

I edited Jesse's debut novel, "Otto von Trapezoid and the Empress of Thieves" for Curiosity Quills Press.

Untaken by J.E. Anckorn

I proofread J.E.'s novel for typos and formatting to prepare it for publication through Curiosity Quills Press.

The Kootenai Brown Series by M.C. Piper

I helped author M.C. Piper develop and edit her trilogy of modern-day workplace fantasy novellas, the Kootenai Brown Series.

The Kootenai Brown Series by M.C. Piper

I helped author M.C. Piper develop and edit her trilogy of modern-day workplace fantasy novellas, the Kootenai Brown Series.

The Kootenai Brown Series by M.C. Piper

I helped author M.C. Piper develop and edit her trilogy of modern-day workplace fantasy novellas, the Kootenai Brown Series.

Altar of Reality by Mara Valderran

I proofread Mara's novel for typos and formatting to prepare it for publication through Curiosity Quills Press.

Burning Bright by Melissa McShane

I edited Melissa's magical Regency-era fantasy romance for Curiosity Quills Press.

Because of You by RaShelle Workman

I edited RaShelle's contemporary romance novel "Because of You," for Curiosity Quills Press.

The Lucky Clover Series by Olivia Love

I helped indie author Olivia Love revise her Lucky Clover romance mystery series for republication.

Going Through The Change by Samantha Bryant

I proofread Samantha's menopausal superhero novel for publication with Curiosity Quills Press.

Detour to Apocalypse by Michael Panush

I edited the second book in Michael's Rot Rods series for publication through Curiosity Quills Press.

Watch Me Burn by Sharon Bayliss

I edited the second book in Sharon's The December People series for Curiosity Quills Press.

Frequently Asked Questions

How will a manuscript critique help me in the publishing process?

No story is perfect on the first draft, but it can be hard for writers to judge their own work objectively. Having another person who can look over your novel with fresh eyes will make it easier to identify which areas need to be updated or changed. While you can ask friends or family to do this for you (and you should!), asking for the input of an experienced industry professional can reveal insights you simply aren’t going to get from a casual reader.

What genres are you able to give feedback on?

I’m happy to read any genre, although I specialize in science fiction and fantasy. I’m comfortable with stories containing adult content and open to characters of all genders, sexual orientations, and ethnicities. I prefer not to take on projects that incite hate or violence against any groups of people (and, frankly, you may not be happy with the feedback I have to give), although stories with villains promoting these ideas are fine. In other words, a story set in Nazi Germany is probably okay. A book promoting anti-Semitic conspiracy theories is not. If in doubt, contact me to ask. I do reserve the right to refund any project that makes me personally uncomfortable.

Will this help my work get accepted by a publisher?

I can’t guarantee that your work will be picked up by a publisher following a critique. However, implementing my recommendations will help you write a stronger story and make it much more likely a publisher or agent will be interested in your novel. Unfortunately, novels may be rejected for any number of reasons, including changes in the market, the personal tastes of an editor or agent, other manuscripts that have recently been acquired, and just plain poor timing. That’s why, even if you’ve been rejected from one market, it’s important to continue to submitting elsewhere until your work finds a home.

I don't need help revising - do you offer editing or proofreading services?

Yes! Check out my proofreading and editing page for more details.

Have any questions I haven’t answered here? Contact me and let me know.

Order Your Professional Critique Today

After I’ve read your manuscript, I’ll send you a detailed, chapter-by-chapter report with actionable advice on how to improve your novel – giving it the best chance at a good first impression with readers, agents, and acquisitions editors.

Accepting Paypal, Paypal Credit, Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover

(Is your manuscript over 85,000 words? Contact me for a custom quote.)