Manuscript Assessments

SpecFicNZ offers up to 10 free manuscript assessments to members each year, on a first-come basis (budget allowing). Submissions must be speculative, and can be prose, poetry, or screenplay. Submissions should be no longer than 2500 words. If a work is longer (a novel or novella), the author may submit a synopsis so the assessor has better context for the excerpt. The author may also submit up to two specific questions pertaining to the project that they would like help with.

SpecFicNZ will pair the author with an assessor whose work closely aligns with the author’s own. The final appraisal will consist of a 1-2 page document with suggestions for strengthening the work. It might include comments on plot, structure, character, and style. It might also include comments on whether the piece aligns with the expectations of genre and intended audience. Assessors’ comments will be restricted to the excerpt and synopsis, and may not be exhaustive. They may not result in the work achieving publication.

Assessments should be completed within six weeks of matching with an assessor. All materials will remain the property of the author and will be kept confidential.

Assessors are drawn from the SpecFicNZ membership and will include experienced authors and editors.

To request an assessment: Send your submission to [email protected] with Manuscript Assessment and your name in the subject line.

Become an assessor: If you are an experienced writer or editor of speculative fiction and would like to offer your services to this programme, please send a thumbnail bio outlining your skills and project preferences to SpecFicNZ at [email protected] and we will add you to our list of assessors. Please note, inclusion on the assessor list does not guarantee you will be invited to provide an assessment as offers will depend on the nature and number of projects submitted. Payment will be a flat fee of NZ$120.00 per completed assessment.

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