Manuscript Critique
Your one-stop source for manuscript services and unbiased advice

Manuscript Critique: Old-Fashioned
Book Editing You Can Trust!

If you want your novel to compete with those on book store shelves, Manuscript Critique will help you get there.

A critique alone offers a big-picture bird's eye view of your work, looking closely at the construction of your novel, including structure, characterization, exposition, pacing, etc. An edit provides a line-by-line examination of your formatting, punctuation, and grammar. Manuscript Critique, unlike most other editing services, gives you both at one low price.

Critique or Edit?

Critiquers are editors. The only difference is the scope of their approach. Again, an edit is a more hands-on, under-the-microscope look at the little issues that, if uncorrected, could reflect a lack of professionalism, whereas a critique warns of the "big stuff," violations of which could lead to automatic rejection by reputable publishers.

Even when you self-publish, your book competes with traditionally published ones, so it's best to make your novel prove that it belongs on book store shelves with Stephen King and the like.

For simplicity purposes, all further references to "edit" or "book editing," since Manuscript Critique provides both critique and editing services, include critiquing services as well.

How the Editing Business Has Changed

In recent years editing has become a big business, distancing clients from their editors. Many big-business book editing companies Book cover of Keeper by book editor Michael Garrettrepresent a large number of editors and randomly assign an editor to you when you hire them. Some won’t even allow clients to contact their editors directly. As a result, it's difficult to have a direct line of communication with your editor.

Book editing is an unregulated business that requires no licensing or certification; anyone can legally claim to be an editor regardless of a  lack of relevant experience, and there is no authority that oversees editorial ethics. It's easy to get burned by an inexperienced editor.

How Authors Can Be Fooled

Many online editors are not fully qualified to offer the depth of services that you need.  Their flashy websites can be deceiving with tempting come-ons to hide behind. Beware!

New writers can easily fall for editors who seem to know what they're talking about but have a lack of experience to back it up. Because of their inexperience, they use come-ons like “free sample edit,” “the ten best book editors” and “how to edit your own manuscript” to attract your attention as if they're being helpful. They most assuredly are not.Open book Read my book editing advice to learn why they're wrong.

Seasoned professional editors don't resort to such tactics and are selective in their choice of with whom to work. They typically get more business than they can handle simply from their websites.

Let Me Set The Record Straight

The truth about book editing offered here at Manuscript Critique will save you from making a costly mistake that could prove deadlyBook cover of Keeper by book editor Michael Garrett to your career.

No editor is right for everyone. Perhaps I'm the best editor for you; maybe not. Whether you choose me as your editor or not, this website will educate you on the realities of the editorial process and prepare you for a more educated future as a writer.

So Why Should You Believe Me?

Headshot of Michael Garrett, veteran book editorYou can learn more about my impressive background on my bio page, so I'll offer a condensed response here. 

I, Michael Garrett, have been in this business for over forty years and was an Editorial Associate of the Writer's Digest School. I've been a professional editor for almost thirty-five years and have worked with numerous best-selling-authors and thousands of unpublished authors like yourself. I'm also an internationally published author with two successful novels of my own, one of which was optioned for a movie.

I've seen and experienced just about everything in this business, and I'm happy to pass along to you the truth of what I've learned.

I will now answer a few questions that are seldom asked. You'll find more specific information on my manuscript critique editing services, book editing advice, and self-publishing pages.


Michael Garrett's writing advice is right on!

— Kirk Polking, former director, Writer's Digest School


I had the good fortune of your wisdom and assistance for my first manuscript. Your help in so many areas was like a four-year college crash course and your directness was exactly what I had hoped for and count on again.

— David Houser


Hire an editor who has edited international books!

   Cover of German book edited by Michael Garrett   Cover of Russian book edited by Michael Garrett

Is there a secret to getting published?

Not really, but the most successful authors write what publishers want to buy. You envision your novel one way whereas agents and publishers view it from another perspective. They're looking for issues that you're unaware of, and successful authors have learned what these issues are.

Basic standards of novel construction must be reflected in your manuscript, and the right book editor will point out where they're lacking in your manuscript. The only way for you to learn what you're doing wrong is through an industry professional.

Even when self-publishing you must be aware of the demands of traditional publishing. Doing things "your way" can be dangerous without the knowledge of how it could negatively impact your chances for success.

Learn the truth about book editing services

I encourage you now to explore the rest of this site.

My book editing services page will you give you the specifics of my editorial services--what they are and how to obtain them. Book editing advice answers more questions and helps you understand how deceptive some editing services can be. My bio page will tell you more about my background and editing philosophy, and my self-publishing page will warn you about common costly mistakes when selecting the self-publication option.

Thanks for visiting Manuscript Critique!

Cover of Keeper by book editor Michael Garrett

My first novel, Keeper, sold out its initial printing
and was optioned for a movie!

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