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One-hour manuscript review and consultation

If you would like constructive feedback on your manuscript from someone who has a marrow-deep understanding of picture books as a genre, then you can receive that with a 1-Hour Manuscript Review and Consultation.

After one hour-long session together, you'll have a very clear sense of:

  • How your manuscript may appear to an agent or editor,
  • What needs to be done to strengthen your manuscript, and
  • Actionable steps to make that happen.

The process we go through on our call will help you exponentially improve your current manuscript, and give you a way of thinking about writing picture books that provides a process you can re-use for any book you write in the future.

How this consultation works

This consultation is tailored to what your specific manuscript needs, and as such, there is no prescribed version of how the hour will go.

Here’s a general idea of how the process unfolds:

  • You send me your manuscript 5-7 days prior to our call, and I will send you an invoice when I’ve received it.
  • I read the manuscript and my wheels begin turning.
  • At the scheduled time, we speak on the phone.
  • I’ll provide my initial evaluation, including what’s working and what still needs to be resolved.

Sometimes this means taking an idea that’s still quite undeveloped and figuring out the story that’s waiting to be told.

Other times, this might mean focusing on specific elements of craft like character development, structure, or language usage.

In every case, our time together is spent getting clear on your story and finding the best way for you to articulate it.

Throughout the hour, we engage in an interactive process where we explore the challenges and map out workable solutions. We’ll discuss your work, I’ll ask questions, we’ll brainstorm together, dig deep, address craft issues in real time and find workable solutions for each issue.

By the time our call is over you will have a clear sense of how your work might be perceived by agents or editors, and what you need to do to make it a stronger, more marketable piece of work. You will also learn more about craft than you thought was possible and will be on your way to becoming a better writer.

My intention is for you to end the call with a renewed sense of possibility for both your manuscript and your journey as a writer – and an understanding of how to get where you want to go.

Details & pricing

Consultation time takes place over the phone—however, if you’re an international client, we can arrange to speak via Skype, WhatsApp or Zoom.

One-hour consultations are $297.

If we are a good match and we decide to work together on an ongoing basis, there are several options available. We can discuss them when we speak.

Curious about working together?

If you’d like to find out if we’re a good fit for working together, you can schedule a free, no-obligation call with me to get to know each other.

We can talk about your manuscript and where you are in the process, and I can discuss more about how I can help.

To schedule a free 30-minute “getting to know you” call, click the button below to set up an appointment.

Kind Words

Simone Kaplan is kind, personable and knowledgeable and I appreciate her honesty and expertise. She gave me great insights and advice that will definitely help make my manuscripts stronger. She’s given me the best critiques that I’ve had and I look forward to working with her again.

— Kimberly Rogers

Working with Simone was a gift to me. Technically my picture book was done, and ready to be produced into app form. I wanted an experienced editor to look at it and tighten it within the parameters in which it already lived. Simone did just that, and she did it beautifully. She instinctively got to the heart of the story and helped bring it to life. I can’t recommend her highly enough.

— Sue Shanahan


Simone’s one-hour phone consultation gave me more insight into my picture book manuscript than months of peer critique groups ever could. Where critique groups tend to line-edit manuscripts or get hung up on personal word choices, Simone zeroed in on my manuscript’s believability flaws and helped me brainstorm ways to bring my story to a satisfactory conclusion. With her help, I now have the insight to reshape my story into something more genuine, convincing and saleable. If you’re looking for a professional with years of industry experience to help you find the heart of your story, hire Simone. You won’t be disappointed.

— Kimberlee Murray