The UK Crime Writers' Association (CWA) has moved into the writers' services market with the launch of its Manuscript Assessment Service. Writers, including non-members of the CWA, will now be allowed to submit full or partial manuscripts for critical assessment by an experienced member or associate member who is an agent or editor.
The CWA stated:
"These days the competition to achieve a publishing deal is fierce. In view of this competition, we receive increasing numbers of enquiries asking for expert critique of manuscripts."
It is introducing the service for aspiring crime fiction writers to help them polish their writing and prepare manuscripts for submission to agents and publishers. Writers submitting a manuscript will have the opportunity to upload a 1000 word synopsis and 3000 word partial, or a full novel up to 100,000 words, and after a period of three to five weeks will receive a detailed critique assessment report between two and four pages (minimum), dependant on the level of critique chosen and paid for in advance. Fees for the two levels of critique are £100 and £350 respectively.
The CWA has operated the Dagger Awards for writers of unpublished crime novels for several years and its success and profile has led to a number of winning writers securing publishing deals for their books.
At the moment, membership and associated membership of the CWA is restricted to commercially published authors of crime and thriller books, editors, reviewers and agents. Exemptions are made for provisional membership to writers whose books are under contract but not yet published.