Auctions: Critiques and Other Assorted Cool

This is a Worldbuilders blog.

First, a quick announcement. We’re extending the end date of Worldbuilders to February 7th. I looked at all the donations we still haven’t listed and realized we needed a little extra time to fit them all in.

Second, today I get to introduce you to several delightful human beings who have generously generously offered their time and talent to Worldbuilders, so we can auction them off.

We have authors, editors, and agents offering to read and critique unpublished manuscripts, a tuckerization, and a bookbinding that I myself am currently resisting the urge to bid on.

All auctions are starting at one (1) penny. And remember, proceeds go to improving people’s lives all over the world though Heifer International,  so bid lavishly and spread the word.

  • A read-and-critique of the first 20,000 words of your manuscript by agent Matt Bialer.

Pat’s Note: Matt is my agent, and I wouldn’t trade him for his weight in gold. He helped me revise my book several times before we landed a publisher, and his help has been invaluable in revising my second book. He’s all kinds of smart, understands stories, and I can honestly say that if it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

You can get more of his professional information HERE.

Matt Bialer (literary agent) will read and evaluate the opening chapters of one manuscript (up to 20,000 words) within three months of submission, not including the last few weeks of December. He will read and critique, and help the author think about the issues that could be raised by editors at publishing houses. He will write a general evaluation of the book, both strengths and weaknesses, but line editing is NOT included. If the book is fantastic or has the potential to be fantastic then offering representation is not out of the question — but representation is not a guarantee.

Mailing details and contact with Matt will be set up following the auction

Interested? You can bid on this critique from Matt Bialer over here.

  • A read-and-critique of your short story of 7,500 words by Jennifer Brozek .

Jennifer Brozek (DAW Books Human for a Day Editor, Editor Assistant Editor Apex Publications) will read and evaluate your short story (up to 7,500 words) within six weeks of submission. She will write a general evaluation of the story and mark up the manuscript using comments and track changes in the document itself. With seven anthologies, two writing awards and one editing award under her belt, she has the experience and skills to help your story be the best it can be. The bulk of her experience is in horror, science fiction, and urban fantasy. Also, the winner will receive two signed anthologies edited by Jennifer Brozek: Human for a Day, published by DAW and the award winning Grants Pass, published by Morrigan Books.

In addition to a manuscript review, Jennifer will be providing the winner with two anthologies that she has edited, Human for a Day and Grants Pass. Grants Pass won the 2010 Australian Shadows Award for best edited publication. She will personalize and sign each book and send them to the winner.

You may learn more about Jennifer at her website.

Mailing details and contact with Jennifer Brozek will be set up following the auction.

Interested? You can bid on Jennifer’s critique over here.

  • A read-and-critique of your manuscript up to 10,000 words by Kat Howard.

Pat’s Note: Kat once saved my life by lifting a burning SUV off my shattered body, and carrying me three miles to a hospital on her back. True story.

Kat Howard is a writer of speculative fiction and an academic, teaching English literature at Stony Brook University. She is a 2008 graduate of Clarion (UCSD). Kat has short fiction that has appeared in the anthology Stories, in Weird Tales, and is forthcoming in Lightspeed and Subterranean. One of her short stories, “Choose Your Own Adventure,” was just chosen for Rich Horton’s Year’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy, 2012.

Kat will review one piece of writing, up to 10,000 words. Whether that is in the form of one short story, or a section of a novel is up to the winner (She just ask that it not be something like ten one thousand word short stories, please.) She would like the work to be double-spaced in a standard, readable font. It will probably about two weeks, so long as she does not have any other deadlines in that period of time. Kat will provide an overall response to the story or novel excerpt, including what she feels are the strengths and weaknesses of the piece as a whole. She’ll talk about character, plot, language, theme, all the storytelling and craft kinds of details. What she will not do is a line or copy edit.

Learn more about Kat on her blog.

Mailing details and contact with Kat Howard will be set up following the auction.

Interested? You can bid on Kat’s critique over here.

  • A read-and-critique of the first 100 pages of your manuscript by David Pomerico.

Pat’s Note: David is the sort of editor I would have loved to have read my manuscript and give me a few pointers back during the long years of rejection before my book was published. What’s more, he’s an absolute prince for donating his time and energy to Worldbuilders even though I don’t have the least bit of blackmail evidence to use against him.

The official description:

David Pomerico is an Associate Editor at Del Rey Spectra, where he focuses primarily on traditional fantasy, urban fantasy, and dystopian and post-apocalyptic literature. That’s not to say that he doesn’t know other genres (he claims to be something known as “well-read”), but that’s definitely where his interests lie. He’s worked with a variety of authors, including Felix Gilman, Sarah Zettel, David J. Williams, Chris Wooding, Darin Bradley, and Ari Marmell, as well as being a part of the Star Wars publishing program at Del Rey. He’s offering a detailed critique and commentary (but not a line edit) for the first 100 pages or so of your manuscript (double-spaced, please—and no margin shenanigans!), which he will get back to you within three months of receiving the manuscript. While he could possibly be blown away and want to make an offer on your book, this isn’t guaranteed (otherwise this might be a really pricey auction!).

Mailing details and contact with David will be set up following the auction.

Interested? You can bid on David’s critique over here.

  • A read-and-critique of first 100 pages of your manuscript by Adrienne Lombardo.

Adrienne Lombardo started at Trident Media Group in the winter 2009 as the assistant to Ellen Levine and later to Don Fehr as well. Before being promoted to Audio Rights Agent in January 2011, she was instrumental in managing Ellen Levine’s extensive backlist, helping to find new clients and handling various subrights sales. She holds an MS in Publishing from New York University.

Her interests include general commercial, sci-fi/fantasy, paranormal, horror and historical fiction, graphic novels, YA, narrative nonfiction and memoir. “My main focus is science fiction, fantasy and horror, genres I’ve been reading all my life, and I’m interested in authors who know how to create worlds of their own.”

She will provide a detailed critique of the first 100 pages of your manuscript and an opinion on the book’s saleability. She is already going blind (probably from reading too much), so she would appreciate a double-spaced submission. She will get back to you within two months of 2012. If she likes your book enough, she may decide she wants to represent you.

Mailing details and contact with Adrienne Lombardo will be set up following the auction.

Interested? You can bid on Adrienne’s critique over here.

Bradley P. Beaulieu is the author of The Winds of Khalakovo, the first of three planned books in The Lays of Anuskaya series. In addition to being an L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Award winner, Brad’s stories have appeared in various other publications, including Realms of Fantasy Magazine, Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show, Writers of the Future 20, and several anthologies from DAW Books. His story, “In the Eyes of the Empress’s Cat,” was voted a Notable Story of 2006 in the Million Writers Award.

Bradley P. Beaulieu is pleased to offer one story or chapter critique of up to 7,500 words. Brad will draft a formal review that will cover such things as how well the story opens, complicates, and closes, how well the characterization works, dialogue, tone, pacing, tension, and a host of other issues. Essentially, he’ll provide a formal review on the positives and negatives found in the story. For these and many more details, including Brad’s bona fides, please visit his Worldbuilders 2011 Auctions page.

Mailing details and contact with Bradley will be set up following the auction

Interested? You can bid on Bradley’s critique over here.

  • Tuckerization to appear in book by Bradley P. Beaulieu

Tuckerize: The use of a person’s name or description in an original story. Term is derived from Wilson Tucker who made a practice of using his friends’ names for minor characters in the stories.

Bradley P. Beaulieu is pleased to offer one Tuckerization for inclusion in the third and final novel of his critically acclaimed Lays of Anuskaya trilogy. All proceeds from the auctions will benefit the 2012 Worldbuilders fundraiser. For the details, please visit Brad’s Worldbuilders 2011 Auctions page.

Contact details with Bradley will be set up following the auction

Interested? You can bid on Bradley’s tuckerization over here.

My name is Gerald and I have been working as a professional bookbinder and conservator for a little over a decade. I am originally from Charleston, South Carolina, though I now work and live in Northern Indiana with my wife, daughter, a disinterested cat named Rudy, and an obscenely large book collection. My specialties in bookbinding are 15th – 19th century style reproductions in leather. You may view my work at here.

The bookbinding process typically takes 4-6 weeks depending on the complexity. I am offering to rebind one book of the winner’s choice in leather (either calfskin or goatskin) and tooled on the spine and boards. I will work with the winner in regards to leather type and color, what kind of marbled endpapers they would prefer, and design suggestions…I have quite a few images and scans that I can provide. The winner will pay to ship the book to me, and I will pay shipping for the return of the completed book.

Mailing details and contact with Gerald Ward will be set up following the auction.

Interested? You can bid on Gerald’s bookbinding over here.

  • A read-and-critique of your entire manuscript by Pat Rothfuss.


I’ll read and critique your whole book. Though I should put some sort of reasonable limit on it, I suppose. How about this: I’ll read your book, anything up to 200,000 words.

What else should I say about myself? It’s hard for me to do these promotional write-ups for myself. Let’s see…

Before I became a published writer, I was a teacher for five years. Before that, I was a writing tutor for nine years. So I know something about giving productive feedback on a piece of writing. I’ve read roughly ten thousand novels, mostly sci-fi and fantasy.

I think about stories all the time and am obsessive about revision. I also have a soothing baritone voice, an IQ in the 160s, and the ability to steal any other mutant’s power just by touching them.

Ah hell… See? I can never take these things seriously. Just read the official description below for the details:

Patrick Rothfuss (international bestselling author, lover of women, and hirsute iconoclast) will read your manuscript and give you critical feedback. We’ll schedule this based on when your manuscript will be ready and my own schedular constraints.

I’ll read through your manuscript, scrawling notes and dirty words in the margins, then I’ll call you on the phone and we can discuss it. I won’t write you up a detailed critique because that’s not how I roll. But we’ll probably chat on the phone for a couple of hours discussing the various strengths and weaknesses of the book, your writing craft, and I’ll offer any suggestions I might have.

If I think your book is super-awesome, I might be willing to pass it along to someone. But be very aware that what you’re buying here is a critique, not a blurb or an introduction to the publishing world. A critique.

You can bid on the critique by Pat Rothfuss over here.

*     *     *

Obviously, these auctions are only going to be running for a limited time. So if you know of someone who might be interested, I’d take it as a kindness if you let them know.

If you’d like to see all the auctions Worldbuilders is currently running, you can find them over here.

Or, if you want to see all the other items that have been donated to Worldbuilders, or just learn more about the fundraiser itself, you head over to the main page.

This entry was posted in Worldbuilders 2011By Pat34 Responses


  1. brian199
    Posted January 15, 2012 at 8:01 PM | Permalink

    Pat.. What if I have a 300,000 word epic. I give you the first 200,000 words. You love it but are losing sleep, pacing through the forest and screaming on top of a mountain to know how it ends because it is the best you’ve ever read.

    Would I then get to read your last 100,000 of the third book?

    I’m no where near finished with any of my stories I want to get done but had to rib you a little.

  2. Posted January 15, 2012 at 8:08 PM | Permalink

    Cool stuff! I’d be all biddy if I had some money.
    I really like Gerald Ward’s website.

    • Posted January 16, 2012 at 7:58 AM | Permalink

      Yeah. Isn’t that cool?

      • Etzulnir
        Posted February 20, 2012 at 2:10 PM | Permalink

        Now I’m just depressed.
        I just finished writing my 1,60,000 words+ fantasy novel, and found out about this auction TODAY.

        Patrick, will you still consider a bid? I’ll donate as much as the highest bidder.

        I’ll sell my house for it if I have to :P

        Having worked so hard on my novel, I really want it to be in worthy hands at the earliest possible time, and am willing to go any lengths for the same.

        Hoping for a positive reply ^_^

    Posted January 15, 2012 at 8:19 PM | Permalink

    Oooh a call from Patrick Rothfuss! What if we don’t have a book but would like to bid on 2 hours of Rothfuss dirty talk?

    • katelyn
      Posted January 15, 2012 at 11:52 PM | Permalink


      • Posted January 16, 2012 at 7:59 AM | Permalink

        I think I’d have trouble writing up that particular auction description….

        Also, I think ebay might have some sort of rule about selling that sort of thing…

        • Posted January 17, 2012 at 12:16 PM | Permalink

          Though I’m not interested in two hours of dirty talk over manuscript stuff, I will offer this:

          Any site allowing bids on souls, virginity, islands, crystal healing and pieces of toast that look like Momma Theresa probably wouldn’t care.

  4. memyshelfandi
    Posted January 15, 2012 at 11:39 PM | Permalink

    Ah, but what if we’re not aspiring writers, but aspiring editors? A chat with some of these people would be of great interest and value to me. Just something to think about. :)

    • OlliC
      Posted January 16, 2012 at 9:01 AM | Permalink

      you might want to bid on the Jenn Brozek auction, then… ;-) Or just try and contact her, she’s a really nice person for all I know, if you’re reasonable you just might get a reply, maybe something can be set up…

  5. Posted January 15, 2012 at 11:42 PM | Permalink

    Does the thermometer thingy on the right account for auction totals too or just the Team Heifer page?

  6. Posted January 16, 2012 at 12:14 AM | Permalink

    It’s nice to see so many people doing what they can to make the world a little better – very cool.

    Regarding the readings, specifically your reading of a manuscript Pat… Is there an expiration date on when the manuscript in question must be gotten to you or is it kind of open-ended? For example, if I want you to read my stuff, how long do I have to get it to you? Are we talking months or can we have a golden ticket that never expires?

    • pinecones
      Posted January 16, 2012 at 5:33 AM | Permalink

      Yes, I have been wondering this as well. It certainly makes a difference in terms of how much to bid.

      • Posted January 16, 2012 at 8:03 AM | Permalink

        Mine wouldn’t expire. You could cash it in in two years if you wanted. Or three.

        For the other folks I’m thinking you’d probably want to use it within the next year or so. But you could always negotiate with them if you wanted to use it later…

  7. JoeLlama
    Posted January 16, 2012 at 12:17 AM | Permalink

    I don’t write, but I may bid on Adrienne Lombardo’s critique if only to get her contact info.

    • Stevo
      Posted January 16, 2012 at 1:12 PM | Permalink

      I was thinking the same… guess that’s not how it works though ;)

  8. Jam
    Posted January 16, 2012 at 6:14 AM | Permalink

    I’d be interested to hear about past winners of those auctions. About their manuscripts and such

    • Posted January 16, 2012 at 8:05 AM | Permalink

      I know at least one person that got their stuff critiqued through one of our auctions has gone on and found representation with a New York agent….

      • OlliC
        Posted January 16, 2012 at 9:02 AM | Permalink

        are you at liberty to disclose who that would be and if the book is available yet? Always looking for new reads… ;-)

        • Posted January 16, 2012 at 10:23 AM | Permalink

          The book isn’t out yet. And I wouldn’t feel good about giving details unless I’d asked all the parties concerned beforehand, which I haven’t.

        • squidheadkid
          Posted January 16, 2012 at 10:25 AM | Permalink

          That would be me! I’m Gabriel Squailia, author of DEAD BOYS and proud winner of one of last year’s read-and-critiques. My novel isn’t available yet, but there’s some info on it here:

          • OlliC
            Posted January 18, 2012 at 3:38 PM | Permalink

            Awesome :) I’ll check the site out and will find a way to keep up to date with it :) If I like what I see there ;)

          • Alex
            Posted January 21, 2012 at 9:45 AM | Permalink

            This actually sounds like a really awesome story, can’t wait for the book release!

          • Jam
            Posted January 23, 2012 at 7:06 PM | Permalink

            O wow! Thanks for sharing :)

  9. jaimo
    Posted January 16, 2012 at 6:19 AM | Permalink


    If you were to bid on the bookbinding, what book would you have rebound?

    • kdculb
      Posted January 16, 2012 at 7:06 AM | Permalink

      I am thinking of getting my signed and personalized, first edition, first printing Name of the Wind rebound. It would definitely be a one of a kind.

  10. VoodooMaster
    Posted January 16, 2012 at 2:21 PM | Permalink

    Hey Pat, it may be off-topic, but I opened this account just to ask you that-

    When will ‘The Wise Man’s Fear’ be published in Hebrew? I finished reading ‘The Name of the Wind’ already, and I just don’t think that I can concentrate on any other book until I read the next book in your series.

    Please answer me.

    • Posted January 16, 2012 at 3:48 PM | Permalink

      Have you tried asking at your local bookstores? I honestly don’t know, but they might….

  11. Chro
    Posted January 16, 2012 at 3:12 PM | Permalink

    Argh, if only if you had put these auctions up BEFORE I queried your agent, Pat. Well, I suppose I’ll hear back from him soon on my novel opening one way or another, even if it does turn out to be a form letter.

    I may still bid on your full critique, though. If nothing else than to maniacally absorb your knowledge and power, until you are nothing more than a dried up husk of skin and beard. Mwahaha!

  12. Neville Longbottom
    Posted January 17, 2012 at 9:57 AM | Permalink

    Pat, in the “go big or go home” category, I humbly submit the following for consideration as your self-introduction:

    “Patrick Rothfuss crafts narrative exploring the sublime potential of the human spirit in the tradition of Geoffrey Chaucer, John Milton and the author of Shakespeare’s cannon.”

    just sayin…..

  13. Posted January 17, 2012 at 12:21 PM | Permalink

    This is absurd and fantastic all at once. Wish I had extra extra cash.

  14. trunuyawkr
    Posted January 17, 2012 at 2:17 PM | Permalink


    Hi Pat – I just wanted to say that I am super excited to read Ms. Howard’s profile, as I grew up literally right across the street from Stony Brook University. I think it is incredibly awesome that the school continues to attract such phenomenal talent, and that they are willing to share with others. I wish I had something written so that I could bid on one of these reviews, but alas I’m afraid I would simply want to pick their brain about the business and ask them how to get my foot in the door of the editing world. Thanks again for showcasing such cool people!

    • IvoryDoom
      Posted January 18, 2012 at 11:21 AM | Permalink

      So Pat, how extremely flattering is it that your current bid is officially 10x more than any of the ACTUAL editors bids LOL. $2000?! Thats a little rich for my blood, but WOOT for WorldBuilders!

  15. Posted January 20, 2012 at 1:28 PM | Permalink

    These are ridiculously awesome auction items. I am so glad you are doing this. I wish I had the money to bid on it, but as the current bid is $2,000 I’ll have to submit my stuff the poor-man’s way. Even still, I hope this raises a lot more money for the foundation.


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