FEARLESS HOME • BOOKS FEATURES KEEP IN TOUCH
It all began with a Fearless Manuscript Review. In early 2003, unknown and unpublished author Gary Renard sent Fearless Books a manuscript entitled The Disappearance of the Universe for a full assessment. By late 2003, that title was published under the Fearless imprint and went on to become a metaphysical best-seller. After 25,000 copies of the Fearless edition were sold, the title was taken over by Hay House, which now has 200,000+ copies in print, in 20 languages worldwide.Fearless Literary has been assessing and editing both fiction and nonfiction manuscripts for over fifteen years, and has given scores of authors priceless advice on refining and preparing their work for publication. We have also provided editing and assessments directly to major publishers including Viking, Crown, Warner, Doubleday, Avon, Simon & Schuster, J.P. Tarcher, Hay House, and others. We know a number of literary agents and we can help promising authors make publishing connections. Finally, we have been publishing independently since 1997 and know the ropes of conventional publishing, print-on-demand, e-books, and other forms of publication. No other editor or literary service can offer our breadth and depth of expertise. If you’re wondering whether your manuscript has what it takes to succeed — and what you can do to improve its chances — investing now in a Fearless assessment is the smartest literary move you’ll ever make!
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"Sari, I cannot tell you how happy I am with the editing...it's fantastic! I see you got a crazy sense of humor like mine. I really appreciate all the time and energy you put into the book. I've had a few customers who sit around the bar tell me that this is one of the funniest books they've ever read. Everyone is happy." — Frank Genao, author, THE SEX LIVES OF MISFITS (Author-published e-book, 2013)
“I am entirely satisfied and immensely grateful for Patrick’s help with my book—from his first evaluation of the manuscript, to his editing, to his book designing, to his help with publishing, to his publicity plan. I unreservedly recommend using Patrick’s help at every (or any) stage in the process of writing, designing, publishing and publicizing your book.” — SUSAN THESENGA, author (Being & Awakening, 2012)
"I was a book editor for a decade and never achieved the kind of bird’s eye clarity that Patrick has brought to my manuscripts. His assessments are as thorough and impeccably reasoned as his suggestions, which are surprising and always helpful. One of my biggest challenges when I embarked on a writing career was finding honest and objective criticism. Patrick delivers both, and more." — John Meils, former book editor (Workman; Macmillan; Stewart, Tabori & Chang)
PUBLISHED WORKS CRITIQUED OR EDITED BY FEARLESS LITERARY INCLUDE:
Impossibly Glamorous: How a Misfit from Kansas Became An Asian Sensation (Impossibly Glamorous Studios,, 2012) by Charles Ayres
Touching: Poems of Love, Longing, and Desire
Double Award Winner, 2011 Next Generation
Indie Books Award (Fearless Books, 2011)
The Light in Ordinary Things
(Fearless Books, 2009) poetry anthology
How to Stop Screwing Up (Hampton Roads, 2007)
by Martha Woodroof
Stay Tuned: Conversations with Dad from the Other Side
(Hampton Roads, 2007) by Jenniffer Weigel
Self-Publishing for Dummies (Wiley, 2006)
by Jason R. Rich
The FLIP (Hampton Roads, 2006)
by Jared Rosen & David Rippe
The Lost Girls (Simon & Schuster, 2004)
a novel by Laurie Fox
Lilith A. Wilith (Lilith & Co., 2002)
children’s picture book by Susan A. Krauser
Boy Still Missing (William Morrow, 2001)
a novel by John Searles
The Way of Adventure (John Wiley & Sons, 2000)
by Jeff Salz, Ph.D.
My Sister from the Black Lagoon
(Simon & Schuster, 1999) a novel by Laurie Fox
Facing Death and Finding Hope (Doubleday, 1997) by Christine Longaker
Inventing the AIDS Virus (Regnery, 1996)
by Peter H. Duesberg
At Long Last Love (Warner, 1994)
by John & Julie Wingo
The Undefended Self (Pathwork Press, 1994)
by Susan Thesenga
The Power of Ethical Persuasion (Viking, 1993)
by Tom Rusk, M.D. with D. Patrick Miller
Instead of Therapy (Hay House, 1991)
by Tom Rusk, M.D. with D. Patrick Miller
What is a Manuscript Review?
A review is a full, publisher-level assessment of your work in progress, including sample editing and comments on the manuscript plus a comprehensive letter of review. This letter offers further observations on what’s working in your project and what could be improved. The Manuscript Review is a crucial step that’s important before you pay for line editing, because it can save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
How? Most line editors provide only a technical check and correction of your existing manuscript, charging by the word from beginning to end. They are not assessing the manuscript’s potential to succeed as a published book. To provide that kind of assessment requires publishing expertise, and very few people offering line editing services are also veteran publishers. We have been publishing independently since 1997, as well as writing and editing for many mainstream publishers and winning both writing and publishing awards for our own work.
Through the years we have found that too many writers invest in editing prematurely, often spending several thousand dollars on a full line edit of their manuscripts before necessary developmental work has been done. First-draft manuscripts are often in need of restructuring or restyling, which the author can usually do with skilled advice. So it is much smarter to follow a publisher’s advice on how to shape and refine your early draft before engaging the services of a line editor. This can not only save you money, but will make you a better writer.
Editing, Coaching, and Publishing
After your project is reviewed, we will recommend the most efficient and least expensive method of editing. If we feel that we can do it at that point, we'll offer a significant discount and begin the edit right away. If you do your own first revision (which we often recommend) and come back later for editing, we'll likewise give you a discount on our estimated editing fee. Depending on the length, current quality, and other characteristics of your work, we charge competitive rates ranging from 2.5 to 4.5 cents per word. But a custom estimate is always given based on the particulars of your work after we've assessed it, rather than a one-size-fits-all rate.
In some cases, a Review is the beginning of a coaching relationship for the continuing development of a project. We can also provide your review and/or editing as part of our Assisted Publishing program, which takes you all the way to a finished book in print and/or digital formats. (You can download our free e-book CHOOSE YOUR PUBLISHING OPTION for a current & comprehensive survey of all the publication alternatives.)
Our review advice deals with both the literary quality and publishing potential of your work. We aim to help you achieve a greater sense of accomplishment as a writer, and find the most efficient and rewarding route to publication. That may mean helping you land representation with a literary agent, find an appropriate independent publisher, or pursue publication on your own. We have worked with a number of established agents, and keep tabs on current conditions in both mainstream and independent publishing.
We have expertise in all forms of adult fiction, and in writing for children and young adults. We can assess virtually all types of nonfiction, including memoir, biography, political and cultural commentary, popular science, self-help, spirituality, and inspiration. We may not be able to review projects of a highly technical nature.
Who are we?
The principals of Fearless Literary are widely-published writers who have made a living in the fields of writing and editing for most of our lives. Fearless founder D. Patrick Miller has published fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry, writing for several major New York houses and his own Fearless Books imprint. Sari Friedman is an award-winning fiction writer, poet, and journalist who earned her MFA from Columbia University. She has also sold numerous nonfiction pieces and taught writing in a variety of venues. Bruce Bawer has authored a dozen books and served as a board member of the National Book Critics Circle. For details on our experience, see our biographical statements below.
How long does a Review take?
For standard-length projects, we generally allow eight weeks from the time of submission and payment to the return of a manuscript with comments, sample editing, and the letter of assessment. Short or partial manuscripts will be assessed more quickly.
How do I submit a manuscript for assessment?
Write to firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know of your interest in pursuing a full manuscript review. We will reply with instructions for submitting payment and submission of your manuscript in Word as an e-mail attachment. For a novel, we request a synopsis of the storyline; for nonfiction projects, we request a table of contents (and a brief chapter outline is helpful). With any work, you should submit a cover letter in the text of your e-mail, describing the history of the project to date, your writing experience, and what you hope to achieve by being published.
See our rate schedule below for costs of reviewing a long manuscript, short or partial manuscript, nonfiction proposal, poetry, and query or cover letters.
We’ve both been helping writers refine their work for over fifteen years, and we share a keen sense of what it takes to survive and succeed as writers in a rapidly-changing market. We look forward to reading your work!
Basic Rates and Conditions for Manuscript Reviews
$1295.00 is the standard fee for assessing a book-length manuscript (50,000-100,000 words). Manuscripts of more than 100,000 words are subject to a $200 surcharge. All manuscripts should be accompanied by a synopsis (for fiction) or table of contents and chapter summaries (for nonfiction) of the entire project. Payment can be made online, and we accept submissions as Word files submitted via e-mail. When we are ready to begin your project, we will send the link to a page where you can pay online.
You will receive a written review of approximately 2000 words, providing a professional opinion of your materials strong points, weaknesses, marketing potential, and overall impact. We generally include some sample editing and additional comments directly on the first 50 pages of Word manuscript files. We also give explicit "next steps" advice you can use to improve your work on your own. If we feel that your work is ready for line editing and the written Review would not be useful, we'll let you know, and give you an estimate for the total editing project. In that case, the $1295 you've paid will serve as a deposit.
$250-$995.00 is the fee range for reading and evaluating complete or partial manuscripts of fewer than 50,000 words, such as novellas, children’s picture books, middle-grade novels, short stories, nonfiction articles, and so on. The written assessment will be about 1000 words.
$695.00 is the standard fee for a Proposal Assessment, reviewing a cover letter and/or query, chapter outline, and short writing sample for a nonfiction project. This assessment helps with the refinement of nonfiction proposals intended for agents and editors.
$250.00 is the standard fee for reading and reviewing a poetry collection. Or, we will assess a poem or group of poems, up to 200 lines total, for $75. Inquire about custom rates. Payment must accompany manuscript.
$95.00 is the standard fee for reviewing and editing a query or cover letter, professional introductions, resumés, press releases, and other brief business-related media. Turnaround is within 48 hours, in most cases. Payment must accompany manuscript.
$75.00 is the standard fee for a quick review of a book idea. See Great Idea Review.
We prefer electronic files in Word format. Please inquire about other submission methods or media.
PLEASE NOTE THAT RESERVATIONS ARE NOW BEING TAKEN FOR REVIEWS AND ASSESSMENTS. If you would like to reserve a start date for the next available Fast Assessment or Review, write email@example.com for the current schedule and reservation information.
Before founding Fearless Books in 1997 to continue the publication of his writing, D. PATRICK MILLER sold three solo projects to major publishers: Viking, Henry Holt, and Dell. He is now the author of nine titles, including Understanding A Course in Miracles (Ten Speed/Random House), and Living with Miracles (Tarcher/Penguin). As a collaborator, ghostwriter, or principal editor, Miller has helped other authors prepare manuscripts for such publishers as Viking, Doubleday, Warner, Crown, Simon & Schuster, Jeremy P. Tarcher, Hay House, Hampton Roads, and John Wiley & Sons. His poetry has been published in a number of magazines and several anthologies. A top-ranked volunteer expert on publishing at AllExperts.com, Miller provides professional consultations to literary agents and publishers as well as published and unpublished authors working in fiction and nonfiction. He is a member of the Authors Guild and Independent Book Publishers Association, and serves as president of the Northern California chapter of the American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA).
SARI FRIEDMAN's fiction, creative non-fiction, poetry and book reviews have appeared in literary magazines, trade journals and anthologies including the O. Henry Festival Stories Collection, San Francisco Chronicle, Berkeley Daily Planet and Manhattan Poetry Review. She's been nominated for several Pushcart Prizes and the General Electric Younger Writers Award, and she won the New Voice in Fiction First Prize from The Writers Voice in NYC. She earned an M.F.A. in Fiction from Columbia University, and has taught writing to at-risk youth and in advanced fiction writing workshops. She's consulted on manuscript acquisitions for numerous publishers including Avon Books and New American Library; she currently provides comprehensive developmental editing and assessments to Fearless Literary Services, a division of Fearless Books. She is a judge for the Northern California Book Award, and is a member of several professional organizations including the Northern California Book Reviewers and the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. She edits the award-winning Fearless Poetry Series, writes short stories and poetry, and is completing writing both an adult literary novel and a young adult novel. Her website appears here.
BRUCE BAWER’s dozen books range from literary criticism (Diminishing Fictions: Essays on the Modern American Novel and Its Critics) and film criticism (The Screenplay’s the Thing) to commentary on Christianity (Stealing Jesus: How Fundamentalism Betrays Christianity), Islam (While Europe Slept), free speech (Surrender), and gay rights (A Place at the Table). He has also published volumes of poetry, edited a collection of essays, collaborated on an as-told-to memoir, and written a composition textbook. His books have been issued by such publishers as Simon & Schuster, Dutton, Doubleday, and Crown, and have been translated into several languages. He has also been a prolific book reviewer for such publications as the New York Times Book Review, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post Book World, has written voluminously for scores of magazines, newspapers, and websites, including The Hudson Review, American Scholar, Wilson Quarterly, and City Journal, and has been included in numerous anthologies. Bawer has taught writing at Stony Brook University and Adelphi University and served as a board member of the National Book Critics Circle and as editor-in-chief of its professional journal. His 2006 book While Europe Slept was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle award. See his website.