Novel Boot Camp: First Page Critique Workshop

Riverdale Public Library Logo(1)Take your first page for a test drive in this free workshop!

My hope is that the critiques will help you to avoid mistakes that get submissions deleted by agents and that cause readers to put the book down (or click away from the webpage) without buying.

Want to know what to expect from the critiques? Check out last year’s workshop.

Please read all directions before submitting:

  • Submissions open Monday (August 6) and close Friday (August 24).
  • The critiques will be posted the final week of Novel Boot Camp (August 27-31).
  • The critique will be posted publicly on this blog.
  • Your name and the title of the novel will not be included in your critique. Novels will be identified by genre only.
  • I will accept up to 500 words, but in the interest of critiquing as many writers as possible I will only critique as far as I feel is necessary to provide useful feedback (see last year’s workshop to get a sense of the format, though I might shake things up a bit).
  • My hope is that you will be able to apply the information from the first week of videos (which are all about novel openings!) prior to submitting.
  • Submissions will be critiqued in the order they are received.
  • Due to time constraints and the number of submissions, I cannot update your first page after you submit it.
  • I also (sadly!) can’t guarantee that every submission will receive a critique because I cannot predict how many writers will participate.

Thanks for understanding!

***Please include spaces between paragraphs as no other formatting will be preserved after you submit the form. Thanks!***

Want to connect with other Novel Boot Camp Participants or find a critique partner?


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19 thoughts on “Novel Boot Camp: First Page Critique Workshop

  1. Mikahla says:

    I believe that i might have used the wrong site on the end of my email address. If all the critiques will be published, does it matter? Or should I repost it with the correct site?

  2. Matt says:

    I realize this is a little late, as I already submitted the first 500 words of my novel, but, when you say, “Your name and the title of your novel will not be included in your critique”, does that mean we shouldn’t include our name and the title of our novel in our submission? I ask because I didn’t include my name or the title of my novel.

  3. serenaeggers says:

    Eek, I didn’t realize how the paragraph spacing would work (as in, that I needed to add extra new spaces between all the paragraphs) until the formatting changed after I submitted; now the paragraphs are all smushed on top of each other with only line breaks. Should I resubmit or leave it as is? Don’t want to overwhelm you!

  4. Carlos Boza Layseca says:

    I would love to participate in this free critique of my first page. Sadly, mu current novel draft is in spanish. ☹️

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