Item 47: detailed manuscript critique by editor, Rose Fox

The highest bidder will receive one detailed manuscript critique for a complete manuscript of up to 100,000 words.

Rose says:

I would like to donate one (1) detailed manuscript critique for a complete manuscript of up to 100,000 words. Fantasy, SF, horror, and romance are all fair game; I’m fine with explicit sex, explicit violence, main characters being killed off, unhappy endings, and just about anything else you might think to warn a potential reader about; and I’m happy to consider both novels and short story collections. To avoid conflicts of interest with my day job, this offer is only open to authors who are not currently in contract to a traditional publisher, and to books that have not been published by a traditional publisher.

As a freelance editor, I would usually charge $600 for this service.

I am the SF/fantasy/horror and romance reviews editor at Publishers Weekly. I’ve been a professional reviewer of genre fiction for about ten years. I also freelance as a manuscript editor, primarily helping new authors take their first steps toward publication. The winner of this auction can count on me to be completely honest and respectful of the author and the work.

This is an outstanding opportunity to have someone critique your entire manuscript, helping you get it in the best possible shape for submission: don’t miss it!

Minimum Bid: £75.00

– donated by Rose Fox

Secrets to Success as a Writer

Read widely. Write endlessly. Do your research. Proofread twice. Make your deadlines.

Never work without a contract, even if it’s just an email that says “Here are the terms we agreed to, please reply to confirm that all is correct.” Never sign a contract you haven’t read, and if you sell anything longer than a short story or an article, get an agent. Don’t be afraid to negotiate. Be willing to work for low wages while you build your résumé. Make sure your client or publisher has a deadline for paying you, and hold them to it. Always calculate your income in hourly wage terms; it will encourage you to be more efficient and seek better-paying markets. Be scrupulous about your taxes, and hire an accountant who specializes in working with freelancers.

Don’t expect to make a living writing fiction. Whenever you see words–a press release, an in-flight magazine, a billboard–remember that someone was paid to write them, and that someone could be you. Seek new clients wherever you go. Get nice business cards and a good professional website and email address. Send out unsolicited pitches and submissions. Learn how to effectively promote yourself and your work, even if you hate doing it. Don’t let promotion take up time that you should spend doing actual writing.

Take classes in performance and public speaking so you can sound good when you read your work aloud or participate in panel discussions. Go to conferences and conventions to listen and learn, not just to boost your own career. Politely ask older, better writers to mentor you. Make lots of friends in the business–real friends, not just professional contacts. Show them your work and listen to their opinions. Learn to love a good edit and to seek out editors who will give you one. Don’t be an egotist or a doormat.

Take care of your arms and back and voice and eyes; they are the tools of your trade and very difficult to repair or replace if they get damaged.

Know your limits. Push your limits.

About Genre for Japan

Set up by a group of genre fans & professionals, our aim is to raise money for the BRC's Japan Tsunami appeal by auctioning special items donated by the SFF field.
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13 Responses to Item 47: detailed manuscript critique by editor, Rose Fox

  1. Open for bidding: please place your bids!

  2. Simon Brind says:

    I will open the bidding at £75

  3. Alex MacLean says:

    I will bid £85

  4. Mihir says:

    My bid is £90.

  5. Kerry says:

    I’ll go £300

  6. Pingback: Jenni’s top five (six… seven…) picks! | Genre for Japan

  7. Mihir says:

    315 then 🙂

  8. Alex MacLean says:

    I’ll go £320

  9. Mihir says:

    £ 325

  10. Alex MacLean says:


  11. L.L. Wynn says:


  12. Kerry says:


Comments are closed.