covering letter · critique service · Submissions · synopsis · Uncategorized · writing resources

Launching my Writing for Children critique service

After having had several enquiries about manuscript assessments, I have decided to launch my own critique service.  Simply choose your rate depending on the length of your manuscript and email to me.  Once I have received your payment (Paypal or bank transfer) I will aim to respond to you within 6-8 weeks.  You can also include your synopsis and covering letter for each manuscript for free!  Payment is per thousand words.  For a longer book, why not send the first three chapters plus synopsis and covering letter for an appraisal of your complete submission package?

My critique includes:

  • Assessment of pace, plot, characters, dialogue and your author voice.manuscript-critique-service-pic
  • Advice on grammar and punctuation.
  • Help with presentation and layout.
  • Suggestions on how to edit your work.
  • Areas to work on, and most importantly, your strengths!
  • Appraisal of your submission package, if applicable.

I specialise in picture books and young fiction as that’s the age group I’m published in, but I’m happy to look at any writing for children up to young adult.

Please see Critique Service page for current prices.


Plus free synopsis and cover letter critique with each manuscript!

Payment should be via paypal to lou dot treleaven at sky dot com or bank transfer (please email me for details).  I look forward to hearing from you!


Interactive story

The Interactive Story – Part 4

You chose option C with 56% of the votes, meaning that 500 newborn baby slimeworlders have climbed into a slime mining machine and grabbed the controls. That says more about your state of mind that mine, but if that’s what you want…

Catch up with previous episodes here.

The Adventures of Boz Part 4

Boz felt torn. If only he could rip himself in three and rescue all his groups of babies! But those days were behind him, and patch up operations weren’t cheap any more. He would have to prioritise.

He leapt towards the slime mining machine. It was amazing how the little critters had just jumped right in there, as though they knew slime mining was in their blood. He would be proud to have them working alongside him in the future , wasting the precious few years of their little lives scraping slime off the walls of underground tunnels, but for now he had to stop them. After all, they hadn’t been trained in drilling, and even if they had, there was health and safety to think about. Where on Slimeworld Six could he get 500 hard hats in a hurry, and did they even make them in ‘newborn’ size? The logistics were exhausting. He would just have to try and stop them.

Instructing his boss Slimey Sorg to round up the rest of the tribe, he leapt into the mining machine just as it began to career towards the mine entrance.

“Daddy’s here!” he yelled, landing in the driving seat. Good, he had only squashed a few. And he had a feeling those weren’t going to be his favourites anyway.

But it was too late to take control. The vehicle was plunging into the entrance tunnel. The rooneys scattered, and a few made it to the outside. The weight of the vehicle crushed the rickety lift and Boz and his babies dropped down into the mine like a bomb from a Nargavin deathship.

“This is Daddy’s work,” Boz said proudly as the babies zoomed through the lower levels of the mine. “And that’s where the Flat Five got squashed last year – hang on, where are you going you little critters?”

The machine blasted through a mine wall, splattering a tidal wave of slime, and emerged into a cool, dark tunnel. It appeared the babies had managed to find a shortcut into the Slimeworld Underground system. Perhaps they knew what they were doing after all? Boz removed his hands from over his eyes and peered through the darkness. As far as he could recall, there were only three destinations this far east of town. Where were the babies taking him?

It’s over to you.  Time to vote and seal their fate…

Interactive story

Interactive story part 3

The votes are in and the winner is Option C, so let’s see how those baby scumworlders are going to cope without mum (you cruel voters, you!)…

Catch up with previous episodes here.

The Adventures of Boz Part 3

Boz shuffled the ant entrails around with his foot.  “They’re all yours,” he read out slowly.  Was this Mrs Boz’s way of sending him some lunch?  If so, he really didn’t like the look of it.

“Congratulations.”  Slimey Sorg put an oozing hand on his shoulder.  “You’re a dad, three thousand times over.”

“But I’ve missed the birth!” Boz cried, his heart sinking.  “Is… is she angry with me?”

“You could say that.  Come on, old chap.”

Sort guided Boz to the rickety wooden lift and they were pulled up to the surface by a team of slow-witted apes, or ‘Rooneys’ as they were known.

Boz climbed out into the bright daylight.  The rocky world of Scumworld Six was harsh and featureless – apart from a giant basket of baby Scumworlders right in front of him.  Boz’s eyes filled with tears of emotion as he peered into the basket at his spectacularly ugly children, pushing and shoving each other and wailing horribly.  Then he saw the note.

“Dear Boz,

I have just given birth 3,000 times.  I’m rather tired.  So now let’s see how you manage.  I’m off to the Slimey Spa.

Mrs Boz.”

“Well, I suppose it could be worse,” Boz said, trying to look on the bright side.  “There’s only about 500 here, I reckon.”

“Yes,” nodded Sorg sagely.  “And another 500 over there, and another 500 over there, and…”

Boz spun round wildly.  Sorg was right.  Unattended, the babies had been escaping.  They grew fast in the slime-enriched climate of Scumworld Six and were already crawling in every direction.

“Well,  at least there are 500 left,” he said, glancing nervously at Sorg.

“Boz….” Sorg said warningly.  “Are you a dad, or aren’t you?  Come on, take some responsibility!  And this air gun.  With a few good shots you can pick off that lot on the horizon.”

“No!” protested Boz, waving Sorg’s gun away.  “I’m going to do this properly.  I’m going to be a father and prove myself to Mrs Boz!”

Rolling up his slime-stained sleeves, Boz prepared to leap into action.  But which babies should he rescue first?  There were thousands of them!

My Writing

Sweet Things

I am delighted that my nasty adult fairy tale, Sweet Things, has found a home on the horror and crime website Thrillers, Killers ‘n’ Chillers.  Adults only please (the clue is in the name).

There are many great ezines out there showcasing new and old work by both established and up-and-coming authors – but I have to add that this one topped the Preditors and Editors readers poll for best online fiction magazine (!  Keep up the good work, Col and Matt.