During the month of June, Black Lawrence Press author Bryan Furuness is on board to critique fiction manuscripts, and he is accepting everything from flash and short stories to full-length collections and novels. The fees and parameters for each of these categories are as follows:
- Flash fiction, up to 2 pages in length, $25
- Short stories, up to 20 pages in length, $50
- Chapbooks, up to 40 pages in length, $195
- Full-length collections, up to 180 pages in length, $450
- Novellas, up to 100 pages in length, $325
- Novels, up to 300 pages in length, $700
All manuscripts should be double spaced and formatted in 12-point font. The deadline to submit work for this consultation program is June 30. Bryan will complete his work and respond to all participants by July 31. Space in this program is limited, so please be sure to submit your work soon!
Bryan's Statement of Purpose
I like editing, and I’ve done a fair amount of it. Over the years, I’ve edited for Booth, On Earth as It Is, Pressgang, and Engine Books. I’ve also edited a couple of anthologies—Winesburg, Indiana (co-edited with Michael Martone) and My Name was Never Frankenstein: And Other Classic Adventure Tales Remixed—and am working on a third one now.
I teach an editing class at Butler University, and a few years ago we did a video interview with a seasoned editor of a lit mag. My students asked him what he focused on when he edited—characterization, or plot, or setting, or . . . ? He seemed mystified by the question. Then they asked him if he edited with a heavy hand or a light touch. “It depends on the story,” he said. “I try to give it what it needs.”
That’s my philosophy, too. So instead of saying that I’ll focus on certain aspects of craft or warning you that I edit with a pick-ax, I’ll just say that I will do my best to give your manuscript what it needs—but I won't know what it needs until I read it.
My first task is to meet the manuscript on its own terms, figuring out what it is, and what it’s trying to be. As an editor or critique partner, I never want to hijack a story to make it be the way I would write it. My job, as I see it, is to make your manuscript itself, only more so.
My first love is narrative, but I have worked with writers on non-narrative pieces, too. My own writing practice includes short stories, personal essays, and novels. I like to read and write literary fiction, crime fiction, and literary fantasy/magical realism.