Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Picture Book Manuscript Critiques

Praise for my Picture Book Critiques:

"Kristyn Crow is the expert on picture books. Whenever a friend asks for help with a PB manuscript, I always refer to Kristyn. She knows the ins and outs of the form like no one else." Mette Ivie Harrison, Author of The Princess and the Hound (and more)


"Kristyn Crow has special x-ray glasses that make her see right to the bones of my stories. Her writing critiques hit the nail on the head. She's so good she wouldn't even let me use that sentence - because it's a cliché. (I should have asked her to critique this blurb.) She's been workshopping my writing for ten years, and I wouldn't do it without her. Thanks, Kristyn!" Carolyn Fisher, Author/Illustrator of Goodnight, World! (and more)


"Kristyn Crow has reviewed my manuscripts for years. I can always count on her for thorough and honest critiques." Danna Smith, Author of Pirate Nap (and more)


"Kristyn Crow has great insight and experience in what makes a picture book work. Her critiquing and feedback skills help authors to see what their stories are missing as well as what they need to become great." Ken Baker, Author of Brave Little Monster (and more)


"Kristyn Crow's ability to hone in on what is needed to create a successful story is incredible! She has a gift for being able to see what is working and what is not.
Her on-target advice and suggestions never fail to stretch me as a writer and have enabled me to polish and mold my stories into satisfying and publishable tales." Lezlie Evans, Author of Who Loves the Little Lamb (and more)

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I'd like to have my picture book manuscript critiqued. What will it cost?

My current cost is $50.00 for 800 words or less. I may raise or lower this price depending on demand.


My manuscript is longer than 800 words. How much will that cost?

Picture book manuscripts in today's market are targeted for a very young audience, and the trend is less text. So if your manuscript is more than 800 words, I suggest you trim it down. Remember that the illustrations will tell a great deal of the story, so your more descriptive phrases can be cut.

What will the critique include?

I will give a summary as to what I believe is working (and what isn't) in the story, and will also insert comments directly into your manuscript as I read along. I may make specific suggestions for improving phrasing, rhyme, or use of illustration notes. I'll offer ideas for what I think will make the story stronger. I may include paragraphs or even whole worksheets with instruction in particular writing techniques if I believe it will help you.

However, I will not rewrite your story, nor will I edit line by line looking for tiny punctuation and grammar errors. If I notice them, I’ll point them out. But I do not consider myself a copy editor. I would like to think of myself as a deep thinker with insight into what makes a good story. If I feel there are significant problems with mechanics I will suggest you consult an editing service to further perfect your work.


I'm afraid to send my story by email, and I don't know you personally. How can I trust you won't steal my work?

I have more ideas than I know what to do with and have no reason to steal from anyone else. But to reassure you further, when you email your manuscript you have created a virtual paper trail. In theory you could prove that I received your work on a particular date and that I used/stole it. Trust me, such a thing would ruin my reputation as a professional, and I would never do it. However, you may have a story about a tap-dancing elephant and I may be currently working on something similar, just by coincidence. When you make your inquiry to me, give me a brief description of the type of story you want me to look at before sending it. If I've got something similar in the works, I may pass on critiquing your story to protect us both.

What's your turn around time?

I will try to have your critique sent via email within one week. If I'm currently overwhelmed with work, I'll let you know and will give you an estimate for when I can have it finished.

How do I make payment?

You can pay me via PayPal, or mail me a check. On the right hand bar of this blog, under the icon that says "Get a Picture Book Manuscript critique from Kristyn Crow" is a "BUY NOW" icon that will take you to my PayPal account.

If you mail a check, I will not cash it until I have critiqued your work. When the check clears, I will send you my critique.

Either way, make an inquiry first to get the process going. Be sure to include a one-sentence description of your story. My email is below, or on the sidebar of this blog.


Any more questions? Contact me at kristyncrowbooks@gmail.com.

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