How do I know if my manuscript is ready for submission?

How do I know if my manuscript is ready for submission?

Good question! To answer this, ask yourself how many times you have edited your work. If your response is anything like, "too often to even count," then you're probably ready!

If you've written a novel, but feel shaky about your ability to edit your own work due to a weak grasp of grammatical concepts, it's wise to take a few English refresher courses, just to review the vital information so that you can better perfect your own writing.  It is also strongly advisable to have at least one extra person with a skilled eye for grammar and an unbiased opinion look over your manuscript, make corrections, and offer constructive criticism before you send out your query.

Once you are confident that you have edited your work sufficiently, set it aside for a while and then return to it when you can read the work with fresh eyes. Chances are, you will come upon any broader plot issues or holes that you may have missed when you were concentrating on the smaller details.

A strong manuscript is not only defined by correct use of grammar, but also the following points that editors look for when reviewing a manuscript:

-Understanding of and consistency in the use of tense throughout the work.

-Clear sentence structure. If you find yourself having to go back and reread your own lines to comprehend their meaning, then a change in wording is called for.

-Consistency in the traits and behavior of your main characters.

-Believability in dialogue.

-Well developed plot and characters.

Connect with