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When you ask people to read the first draft of your finished non-fiction manuscript, give them a copy of this page. With these questions, they will be able to provide you with solid feedback. Remind your readers that an honest assessment of the strengths and weaknesses will be more helpful to you than just hearing about the interesting parts.


Questions for a First Reader


  • Is the overall point or argument clearly presented?

  • Did the author jump around too much, assume too much background knowledge of the reader or forget to explain some important things?

  • Is the pace even? Where does it move too slowly or too quickly?

  • Is the research presented in a logical and clear manner?

  • Is the research well supported? What sections require more support or less?

  • Were the examples and anecdotes helpful or unnecessary?

  • Is the argument convincing?

  • What is the overall quality of the writing? What problems did you find with the writing?

  • Does the writer use a strong, consistent voice?

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