Manuscript Critique
    Your one-stop source for book editing and unbiased advice

Manuscript Critique: Book Editing Services
and Advice You Can Trust!

Finding the right book editor can be tremendously frustrating, and it's easy to get burned.

How Book Editing Has Changed

In recent years book editing has become a big business, distancing clients from their editors. Many prominent 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.

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. Again, it's so 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 services 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 What Qualifies Me To Give You The Truth?

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, know what I'm talking about because I've 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 book 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

Will multiple edits be necessary before my
Manuscript is ready for submission to literary agents?

That's completely up to you. The editorial process typically works this way with any legitimate editor:

(1) Your first edit will bombard you with suggested changes to make your manuscript meet commercial publishing standards.

(2) You will then perform a substantial revision to your manuscript incorporating what you've learned above.

(3) If you followed instructions well and feel confident in your results, there may be no need for further edits. If you still have misgivings, however, another edit at this point could prove worthwhile.

Some editorial clients may be satisfied with their work after only one or two edits. Others, however, may need as many as four or five more. It's all dependent on how much you've absorbed and how effectively you apply it.


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

Do agents and publishers Want
Previously Edited Submissions?

Yes, they prefer professionally edited manuscripts for several reasons. First, having invested in your work by paying for an edit gives you more credibility. If you're both serious and confident enough about your manuscript to pay for an edit, perhaps it's at least a cut above average. Also, a previously edited manuscript shouldn't have as many problems as an unedited one, which can save the publisher time and money if your submission is accepted.

The key factor that you must relay to agents and publishers, however, is that you've also given the manuscript a thorough rewrite following the edit. A professional edit without a rewrite is worthless.


Hire an editor who has edited international books!

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

Must I write like Shakespeare
To be traditionally published?

Absolutely not. You can be a successfully published author with only average writing skills. EXAMPLE: The Shades of Grey series. Great writing? No. Generates enormous sales? Absolutely!

Some best-selling authors are only average writers. As a result, average quality manuscripts sometimes meet overall publisher expectations more so than better written ones!

Publishers are more interested in the effectiveness of the writing than its quality. How quickly do you engage the reader's interest? How effectively do you maintain that level of interest throughout the manuscript? How focused is your storyline?
Change your focus from writing better to writing smarter.

why is book editing so Expensive?

Editing fees are typically set by what the market will bear. Many editors approach rate-setting in terms of "what is the most I can charge without pricing myself out of business?"

I prefer to charge what I feel is fair for both myself and my client. I strive for a win-win situation and make the editing process pleasant. I know that a lot of other editors make far more money than I do, but I don't care. I run an honest business and enjoy my work.

The best edit doesn't have to be the most expensive. For instance, a prominent book editing service charges $13 per page to only line edit and proofread your book. My fee for an average page, including developmental editing, is only about $5! I've edited over 2,600 books and earned a 9.8/10 satisfaction rate.

Check out my  instant pricing now to get the total cost for me to edit your book. My price is guaranteed. I have never, and will never, ask for more than my quoted fee, which is often less than what many book editors charge for proofreading alone. I also strive to get the results back to you as quickly as possible.

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 stopping by!

Cover of Keeper by book editor Michael Garrett

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

This site is listed on webwiki.

An open book

I offer honest, unbiased Book Editing
and Writing Advice!