Writing your book
Do you have a story you need to tell? Or a manuscript you are hoping to get published?
A lot of people feel they “have a book inside them”. Yet how many of those get started, finished, or even published?
I can help you get your novel off the ground or bring it to completion. Writing a novel is hard work. As well as creative flair, it takes determination and perseverance. Almost all writers encounter problems and blockages at times during their writing. Support and thoughtful feedback can help you work through them. Rather than preventing you from continuing, obstacles become opportunities to make your writing stronger.
Once you’ve completed your first draft, going back and re-writing can be even harder. Now your novel has a start, middle and end, it is possible see where issues might be causing problems to the novel as a whole. Is the point of view consistent? Is the pacing right? The dialogue natural? The plot gripping enough? Or too complex? Are your characters well-rounded? Does your novel evoke a realistic sense of place?
It can be hard to stand far enough back from your own novel so you can see it freshly – as a reader will. That’s why writers need readers. But although most readers will react to problems in your novel, they won’t necessarily be able to pin-point what it is you need to do to put it right. Well-meaning friends can send you down the wrong route. That’s why you need critical feedback from an experienced editor.
I offer mentoring packages for writers who want ongoing support and critical advice. This can suit both the beginning writer, and those who are working on their second or subsequent re-write.
I also offer manuscript assessments for those who need a one-off critical appraisal. I will tell you what’s working and what needs fixing.
I’ve published five books with major international publishers, and my work has been translated into 14 languages.
I have an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa (I won an £11K AHRC award for it and passed with distinction).
I have an English BA from Southampton University (First class).
I have several years experience teaching English and writing, including tutoring writing skills at Oxford University, and I have been editing and assessing novels for ten years. I have also worked as a freelance editor for Watkins Publishing.
I know what makes writing work and I can help you with yours. I can give you a frank and insightful assessment of your manuscript, whether you are preparing it for an agent or an editor, or you are intending to self-publish.
Manuscript Assessment Service
What you get:
A full report on your novel – what’s good and what needs work, including chapter by chapter summaries (approx. 10 pages).
Plus marginal notes throughout your manuscript.
Follow up phone call
Unlike most literary assessment services, I include a follow up phone (or skype) call as part of the assessment, to discuss the report and possible next steps. I have found that these phone calls are an invaluable part of the process. Reading feedback will normally spark all sorts of ideas about how to fix any issues I’ve highlighted. You can use this follow up session to check you’ve understood my comments, or run through your ideas with me. Arranged at a mutually convenient time (approx 30 – 45 mins).
£95 flat fee + £5 per 1000 words e.g.:
20 000 £195
50 000 £345
70 000 £445
100 000 £595
Turnaround time is usually up to 4 weeks.
Express 10 day service – Extra £95
(Please check for availability.)
Need a second assessment? Because I love seeing how you have progressed your manuscript I offer a 20% discount on a second assessment within 12 months.
What authors say:
“Amber doesn’t pull any punches and lets you know what is working and what is not. If you want somebody who will tell you your work is ‘nice’, Amber is not for you. On the other hand, if you want someone who will make your work publishable, Amber will help you get there. She’s brilliant and knows what works.” Shelley, 2017
Have you got a story to tell, but would rather have someone else set it to paper? For the right client and project (and depending on my availability), I may be able to offer a ghost writing service. Ghost writing normally takes place over a few months and includes: several face-to-face sessions while you tell your story; my write-up time; you reviewing the writing; feedback session(s), and time for revisions as necessary.
Please email me in the first instance to discuss your requirements.