Journal

Critique Notes for Writers

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For picture books, I read through the manuscript once. Then at the top of the page, I write Michelle’s Critique Feedback, with bullets for all of the pros. Then another section of suggestions where I add bullets for the areas that aren’t working for me. I also add comments in line throughout the manuscript, where I love the writing, where I might be confused, and where I have suggestions.

For writers new to critiques, or looking for a format to help with critique groups, here’s the template that I received for my critique at the 2018 SCBWI Austin conference. I use this longer critique format for chapter books and novels, but if you’re new to critiques, this might be helpful for picture books too…

CRITIQUE NOTES

Date:

Title of Manuscript:

Author:

Reviewer:

 

1.     What are the positive aspects of this work?

 

 

 

2.     What elements need the most attention and improvement?

 

 

 

3.     Notes on plot and pacing

 

 

 

4.     Notes on viewpoint

 

 

 

5.     Notes on voice

 

 

 

6.     Notes on characterization

 

 

 

7.     Notes on language/dialogue

 

 

8.     Notes on setting

 

 

9.     Notes on audience elements

 

 

10. Notes on marketability

 

 

11. Next steps/Would you want to read more?

 

 

12. Additional comments

 

 

Michelle Howell Miller