Apply for Manuscript Review


1. Eligibility Criteria

To apply for the Manuscript Review Program, you must be a member in good standing of the WFNS. General membership is open to anyone who writes.

2. Reviewer Profiles

Select three potential reviewers from the profiles below. Make certain that each selected reviewer is available when you would like your review conducted and that they review in the genre you’re submitting.

GENRES: Long-form fiction, Short-form fiction, Historical fiction; Short-form creative nonfiction, Long-form creative nonfiction, Memoir, Research-based nonfiction

AVAILABILITY: April – December

“I write and edit narrative pretty much every day. As a journalist with hundreds of published stories, I make sense of complex information by making it into story. As a journalist and features writer, I’ve worked in Canada and abroad, including a stint working for a daily national newspaper in Ghana. I shared an honourable mention in the 2009 Canadian National Magazine Awards for a story about a Ghanaian prison. I’ve written for a long list of magazines and newspapers in Canada and the United States. A few highlights include The Globe and Mail, Science Friday, Chronicle Herald, Z Magazine, Canadian Dimension, This Magazine, Briarpatch, Saltscapes, Halifax Magazine, The Halifax Examiner, Progress Magazine, and The Coast. My piece on efforts to create an onshore fish farm won a Silver Atlantic Journalism Award for Saltscapes Magazine. My goal in every story is to bring human faces to complex issues, touching not only the minds but the hearts of readers. Most prominently, this work shows in my books.

“My latest book is Indian School Road, which uses historical and contemporary research to tell the difficult and multi-faceted story of the Maritimes’ only Indian Residential School. Released in August 2014, this book won the Dave Greber Prize for social justice writing. My previous book, Eco-Innovators: Sustainability in Atlantic Canada, won the 2012 Best Atlantic-Published Book Award and was a finalist for the Richardson Non-Fiction Prize. It is a series of profiles of farmers, fishers, activists, politicians, businesspersons, artists and others committed to improving how we live for the sake of the planet. My novel Drive-by Saviours won the H.R. Percy Prize, was longlisted for a ReLit Prize and made the Canada Reads Top Essential Books List in 2011. It received critical acclaim from national and local publications. I’ve also published about 20 short stories in literary journals, magazines and anthologies (published by the likes of Descant, Nashwaak Review, Roseway, Pottersfield Press, Voiceprint Canada, The Society, Rattling Books, Third Person Press, and Fierce Ink).”

GENRES: Long-form fiction, Short-form fiction


K.R. Byggdin’s short fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction has been published in anthologies and journals across Canada, the UK, and New Zealand. Their writing has received support from the Canada Council for the Arts, and they are an alum of the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia’s Alistair MacLeod Mentorship Program and the Banff Centre’s Emerging Writers Intensive. In 2022, they completed studies in English and Creative Writing at Dalhousie University and published their first novel, Wonder World, with Enfield & Wizenty. For more information about their writing, visit

“I have extensive experience workshopping peers with cordial and constructive feedback, have served as a fiction and creative nonfiction editor for Dalhousie’s Fathom journal and as a freelance editor for a variety of writing projects, and am also active as a manuscript reviewer for The Writers’ Union of Canada. Developmental and structural editing is where I shine. My goal is to offer substantive and specific feedback, probing the story and posing clarifying questions that allow each writer to go deeper with their work while always respecting and honouring the story they wish to tell. As a queer and nonbinary writer, I am particularly interested in working with other 2SLGBTQ+ writers to strengthen their unique voices and expand queer and trans representation in Canadian literature.”

GENRES: Long-form fiction, Short-form fiction; Short-form creative nonfiction, Long-form creative nonfiction, Memoir, Research-based nonfiction; Children’s writing (early readers, chapter books)

AVAILABILITY: April – December

“Long form fiction: as consulting manuscript editor I’ve critiqued several full-length adult fiction manuscripts. Short Fiction: as writing group member and participant in the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa, I’ve critiqued short stories. Short form creative non-fiction (CNF): I’ve taught 2 university credit courses and two WFNS workshops on CNF writing, evaluating student’s work. Long form creative non-fiction: edited Take as Directed, a best-selling book. Research-based non-fiction: as academic editor I’ve edited theses, journal articles and research papers. Early Readers/Chapter Books: I authored two children’s chapter books and visited many schools participating in the Writers in the Schools.”

GENRES: Long-form fiction, Short-form fiction

AVAILABILITY: October – June

“I have been writing and reading fiction and poetry since I was ten years of age, because these activities were more gratifying than nearly any other challenge or pleasure. When placing your manuscript in the hands of another reader, I think you would like to know the person has a love for the art of writing.

“I have not been employed as a literary editor; I have read and critiqued hundreds of manuscripts as a teacher of creative writing. I have also had six novels and two teaching text published as well as short fiction and poetry in various literary magazines and anthologies.

“When I read your manuscript, I will be first be looking for the heart of the story, what inspired you, as a writer, to chose this story above infinite possibilities . . . a story you wish to share with readers. I will be attentive to the basics:

  • Plot driven novel or character driven novel.
  • Plot type, quest, metamorphosis, boy meets girl, comedy, tragedy, etc.
  • Setting and atmosphere.
  • Structure.
  • Characterization is an illusion based on three elements: consistency, complexity and individuality.
  • Dialogue, exposition, and fresh phrasing.
  • Tone and mood and clear themes.

“I will strive to find your style through your use of powerful / beautiful / witty / language, from characters and exposition that puts me firmly in your story. And I will look for a balance that urges me to keep reading, keep turning the pages.”

GENRES: Short-form creative nonfiction, Long-form creative nonfiction, Memoir; Poetry


Deirdre Dwyer is the author of three poetry collections: The Breath that Lightens the Body (Beach Holme, 1999); Going to the Eyestone (Wolsak & Wynn, 2002); and The Blomidon Logs (ECW Press, 2016). Her prose has been published in Queen’s Quarterly, Filling Station and the Eastern Shore Cooperator & through her monthly article profiling local artists. She has a Masters in Creative Writing from the University of Windsor, Ontario, and has worked as teacher, editor, tutor, and ESL instructor, working with students of all ages and from different cultures. She is a Writers In The Schools participant and has helped fellow writers edit their work. She is now working on three manuscripts: of her three years in Tokyo, Japan; of her travels through Asia & Europe in 1990; and of her trip to the Iceland Writers Retreat in 2019.

GENRES: Short-form fiction; Poetry

AVAILABILITY: April – September

“I’m an experienced writer, editor, and writing instructor with a BA Concordia (English & Creative Writing) and MFA University of Guelph (Creative Writing). I’m the author of the poetry collection Sympathy Loophole (Mansfield Press, 2012); have published poems in numerous print and online publications, including This Magazine, The New Quarterly, The Antigonish Review, Matrix, Lemon Hound, The Rusty Toque, and more; and have taught poetry workshops through a community program for youth and adults and at Mount Allison University. I’m also the editor of the short fiction anthology Transits: Stories from In-Between (Invisible Publishing, 2007); have published fiction in Geist, Kiss Machine, and Syphon; and have taught Creative Writing: Fiction at Dalhousie University.”

GENRES: Long-form fiction, Short-form fiction; Young adult fiction; Children’s writing (early readers, chapter books)

AVAILABILITY: April – December

“My career in writing began in 1978 with the publication of a short story in Grain Magazine.  Since then, I’ve published over 20 books for teens, children, and educators.  As a manuscript reviewer, I offer my best critical and creative skills, caring about the draft writing as much as I do my own.”

Mentorships: for the WFNS Mentorship Program (YA fiction). Writing Workshops: the craft of writing fiction for adults, for teens, and for children. Judging Writing Competitions: YA fiction, essay, short fiction, children’s picture books, and chapter books.

Publication History: short fiction (magazines); YA fiction; middle-grade fiction; chapter books; early reader fiction and non-fiction; teacher resources (writing curriculum)

Editing Experience: chapter books, early reader fiction and non-fiction; teacher resources

Manuscript Reviews: with the Writers’ Union of Canada program; several private contracts.

GENRES: Literary fiction; Long-form creative nonfiction, Short-form creative nonfiction, Memoir, Research-based nonfiction


“I am the deputy editor of the international Buddhist magazine Lion’s Roar (formerly called the Shambhala Sun). This position has given me fifteen years of experience helping both New York Times bestselling authors and emerging writers to conceive, shape and fine tune their work. I’m also the editor of three anthologies for Shambhala Publications and of the single-issue publication The Mindful Kitchen. I’m author of Awakening My Heart: Essays, Articles, and Interviews on the Buddhist Life (Pottersfield Press) and of the picture books My First Book of Canadian Birds (Nimbus Publishing) and The Day the Buddha Woke Up (Wisdom Publications). My writing—fiction, nonfiction, and poetry—has appeared in a wide range of publications, including The Globe and Mail, The Antigonish Review, Prairie Fire, BirdWatching, Mindful, Saltscapes, The Best Buddhist Writing series, and the Best Women’s Travel Writing series. I have an MFA in creative writing from the University of British Columbia, a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of King’s College, and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Dalhousie.”

GENRES: Long-form fiction, Science fiction, Fantasy fiction; Short-form creative nonfiction, Long-form creative nonfiction, Research-based nonfiction; Young adult fiction

AVAILABILITY: April – December

Author and award-winning journalist Carol Moreira can’t stay in one place but is currently based in beautiful Nova Scotia. She is the author of the YA novel Riptides (Moose House Publications 2021), the YA fantasy Membrane (Fierce Ink Press, 2013) and the YA contemporary novel Charged (James Lorimer, 2008). She is a contributor to the immigration anthology Coming Here, Being Here (Guernica Editions, 2016) and to the multi-authored novel Less Than Innocent (Moose House, fall 2022). Moose House will re-publish Membrane in late 2022 and will publish her adult fantasy, Glow, in 2023.

As a journalist, Carol is a partner in both, an innovation news site, and the soon-to-be-launched BlueTechToday, an oceans-themed publication. In the 1990s, she ran Precocious Press with her husband Peter Moreira, producing the Tiny Travellers series of children’s travel books, including Tiny Travellers in London, Tiny Travellers in Hong Kong and Tiny Travellers in Tokyo.

In her role as an editor and manuscript reviewer, Carol loves helping writers hone their work and develop their own voice. Writing can be tough and lonely. All writers lose perspective on their work after a while.

Publications: Charged (James Lorimer, 2008). Membrane (Fierce ink Press, 2013). Celtic Life International magazine editor, 2012-2013., editor and co-principal, 2013-2016. Periodicals written for include Toronto Star, Globe and Mail, South China Morning Post, Travel Trade Gazette, Halifax Magazine, etc.

GENRES: Children’s writing (picture books, chapter books, middle readers)


“When reviewing a manuscript, I bring over 30 years of writing experience, and a love for children’s stories. I have three children’s books published and a fourth due out in the fall of 2023. My middle-grade novel, A Beginner’s Guide to Goodbye, was a finalist for the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award. I’m also a freelance writer for several magazines and very familiar with the editing process. I have critiqued manuscripts for the Canadian Society of Authors, Illustrators and Performers (CANSCAIP) as part of their annual writing competition. I have been a reader/judge for Nova Writes Competition and a judge for the Woozles writing contest. I have taught a writing workshop at Fog Lit, been part of WITS, and participated in many writing courses. I have been a member of several writer’s groups, learning to read the work of others carefully and thoughtfully. I ask questions and provide feedback that is useful and encouraging, pointing out what works and what may need more attention. Many gifted writers have provided me with guidance over the years and I hope to share what I have learned with others.”

GENRES: Children’s writing (picture books, chapter books, middle readers)

AVAILABILITY: September – May

“As a manuscript reviewer, I bring over 20 years of editing experience, with a particular fondness for children’s stories. To date, I have 16 children’s books of my own that have been published by Kids Can Press and Groundwood Books, and I have also been published in several children’s magazines.

“I continue to serve as a mentor for The Writers’ Union of Canada and the Canadian Society of Authors, Illustrators and Performers (CANSCAIP). I have taught writing workshops for CANSCAIP, the International Reading Association, MASC Young Authors and Illustrators, the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, the WFNS, and the Association of Teachers of English of Nova Scotia, as well as for various literary festivals and children’s literature roundtables across Canada. Lastly, I have served on numerous juries for national as well as regional writing competitions for both adults and children, including the Governor General’s Literary Award, the Canadian Children’s Book Center Annual Writing Contest, CANSCAIP’s Annual Writing for Children Contest, the Atlantic Writing Competition offered by the WFNS, and the Dartmouth First Book Award (both fiction and nonfiction).

“My manuscript reviews are a blend of encouragement and honesty in identifying strengths and weaknesses. I will share my interpretation of your manuscript and provide clear criteria that I use to determine my recommendations. Where possible, I will also suggest concrete and specific examples of how you might further distinguish your work from others in your genre.”

GENRES: Long-form fiction, Short-form fiction; Short-form creative nonfiction, Long-form creative nonfiction, Memoir, Research-based nonfiction

AVAILABILITY: April – September

“I am an author, journalist, teacher and speaker with many years’ experience in editing and offering manuscript services, the latter primarily to memoir writers. I have done this work online or via contacts I have made through my annual memoir writing courses in Nova Scotia and BC. I would be pleased to work in all forms of non-fiction and fiction.”

GENRES: Research-based nonfiction, Long-form nonfiction, Short-form nonfiction, Essays; Poetry, Experimental and conceptual writing


Andy Verboom is the author of six poetry chapbooks, editor of long con (an online magazine for art about art), and publisher of Collusion Books (a micro-press dedicated to collaborative poetry). His poetry has won Frog Hollow’s Chapbook Contest and Descant’s Winston Collins Prize, been shortlisted for CV2‘s Young Buck Prize and Arc‘s Poem of the Year, and appeared in Prism, The Puritan, Vallum, and elsewhere.

Working regularly with poets to refine their manuscripts, Andy also leverages a strong background in literary studies (9 years) and communications instruction (12 years) to work on popular non-fiction manuscripts, including memoir, and academic non-fiction manuscripts, including art criticism and science writing.

GENRES: Long-form fiction, Short-form fiction, Historical fiction, Fantasy fiction; Short-form creative nonfiction, Long-form creative nonfiction, Memoir, Research-based nonfiction; Young adult fiction, Children’s writing (early readers, chapter books)

AVAILABILITY: April – December

“With a dozen years’ experience as a freelance book editor, I have edited everything from picture books to academic texts, general non-fiction, YA and historical fiction, and memoir. Many of the manuscripts I’ve edited for authors have gone on to secure traditional publishing contracts, and many I’ve edited for publishers have been nominated for (and won) major book awards. I work hard to provide honest, helpful assessments. I respect the trust authors place in me and give every manuscript the careful consideration it deserves.”

GENRES: Short-form fiction; Long-form creative nonfiction, Short-form creative nonfiction, Memoir, Travel writing; Poetry

AVAILABILITY: April – December

Patrick Woodcock is the author of 9 books of poetry and countless reviews. His work has been translated and published in 14 languages. Since travel is so essential to his work, Patrick has lived and worked in such diverse countries as Iceland, Poland, Russia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, The Sultanate of Oman, Saudi Arabia, Colombia, The Kurdish North of Iraq and Azerbaijan. Within Canada he has travelled from the West to East coasts, as well as working as a volunteer for almost a year with the elders of Fort Good Hope, NT (20km south of the Arctic Circle). He has read at international poetry festivals in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Slovenia, the Kurdish North of Iraq, Azerbaijan, England, The Republic of Georgia, Tanzania, Kenya and Canada’s Winnipeg International Writers Festival. While living in Colombia, he read at the Ibague Poetry Festival, The XVIII Medellin International Poetry Festival, and the Bogota Poetry Festival (being was the first poet from outside of Latin America to ever do so).

Manuscript Review Application Form

You must be a WFNS member to participate in the Manuscript Review Program. General membership is open to anyone who writes.
Provide the exact word count of your manuscript.
Click or drag a file to this area to upload.
Your manuscript must be in DOC or PDF format and should have a file name as follows: Lastname_Firstname_MRP (where "Lastname" is your family name and "Firstname" is your given name).
Ensure the reviewers you select are available and work in your selected form and genre.
E.g., dialogue, setting, or character development. Technical editing (as described on the main Manuscript Review Program page) is not provided.
Provide a minimum of four weeks from the date of your application.
To proceed with a manuscript review, you must agreed to all above terms.

For questions or further information, please contact us.

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Recommended Experience Levels

The Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia (WFNS) recommends that each workshop’s participants share a level or range of writing / publication experience. This is to ensure each participant gets value from the workshop⁠ and is presented with information, strategies, and skills that suit their current writing priorities.

To this end, the “Recommended experience level” section of each workshop description refers to the following definitions developed by WFNS:

  • New writers: those who have been writing creatively for less than two years and/or have not yet been published in any form.
  • Emerging writers: those who have been writing creatively for less than five years and/or have some short publications (poems, stories, or essays) in literary magazines, journals, or anthologies.
  • Established writers/authors: those with numerous publications in magazines, journals, or anthologies and/or a full-length book publication.
  • Professional authors: those with two or more full-length book publications.

For “intensive” and “masterclass” workshops, which provide more opportunities for peer-to-peer (that is, participant-to-participant) feedback, the recommended experience level should be followed.

For all other workshops, the recommended experience level is just that—a recommendation—and we encourage potential participants to follow their own judgment when registering.

If you’re uncertain of your experience level with regard to any particular workshop, please feel free to contact us at