When you are happy with your story and feel you have a sound plot and characters it’s time to get it assessed. It pays to do this before worrying about the illustrations or layout. In my experience manuskript assessor’s feedback usually changes your story a lot. So it is best to do this before you have invested valuable time and money developing the book further.
A manuskript assessor's job is to assess your plot and story. They give you feedback on how you can improve it and make it a more interesting and professional story. They will usually send you a word document of some sort a few pages long or more with problems they have encounter and suggestions on how you can deal with them. This is especially useful if you have not written a book before as they can help you with beginner mistakes and problems.
There are many reasons you should get your story assessed. When writing a book it is very easy to get attached to specific features and ideas. Having a professional fresh eye go over it can give you some great new ideas and directions you would have never thought of on your own.
If you are hoping to get your book published by a publishing company you will heighten your chances greatly by getting an assessment. Some of the publishers I have approached won't even look at your manuscript until it is assessed.
If planning to self publish I feel it is still important to get an assessor to look over your story. By going it alone and creating a book by yourself you are already limiting the amount of feedback and support you get. This is a great way to get a professional eye to look over your work and bring it to a professional level.
Things to look out for when hiring a manuskript assessor.
- Make sure you are hiring someone specialising in children's literature.
- Get a clear outline of what you will receive as far as feedback goes.
- Some countries have organisations which only represent legit qualified assessors.
- Checkout the assessors own work, make sure they are published themselves and that their work is of the same quality and style as you own.
I paid $100NZD for an assessment of my children's book. I would not pay much more than this as it is not worth much more.