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Help - trying to buy critique from WM!

I'm treating myself to the 9K critique from WM for my young adult novel and I've got to the basket stage but when I try to proceed with payment it says

Item Region Validation Error

The user details delivery country region 'United Kingdom' does not match the basket delivery options region , please make sure these match before proceeding.

Well, they do match. They both say United Kingdom. Has anyone else had this problem? If not I'll wait for Monday to ask Webbo.


  • You'll have to phone 'em. The eCheckout often gets itself all checkered up.
  • Try again on a weekday, Lou - there are sometimes problems over the weekend where they shut down the shopping part of the site. If in doubt, shout for Webbo!
  • Hi Lou,
    How annoying - apologies. I've just tried this myself and it seems to be working for me.
    There are actually three things that need to match - the item should have the description "Mini Critique - First Edtions (UK)", the country in your account address, and the button for "Select your delivery options" on the first page of the basket. Would you mind having another check please?
  • This time it was fine. Thank you, Webbo!
  • I do wonder if it is just weekends that entering anything becomes an issue...
  • Just glad you got there Lou, thanks!
    Yes Carol, it's probably already got a name, but let's call it Carol's Law: anything that can go wrong with a website will happen the second the support staff logoff, and will mysteriously correct itself before they've had chance to see it for themselves!
  • I would add the money is well spent and you get good constructive feedback. The main thing I found is confirmation if you are on the right track or not. If the latter, then some good ideas are presented. Where else can you get such help for under fifty pounds, AND able to send 9000 words?
  • [quote=Carol]I do wonder if it is just weekends that entering anything becomes an issue... [/quote]

    Shouldn't that be included on your delicate thread, Carol? ;)

    [quote=toothlight]Where else can you get such help for under fifty pounds, AND able to send 9000 words? [/quote]

    Webbo, may I ask, how long does it take to read 9,000 words and crit in depth?
  • I can't wait to get mine back - I think it is a bargain too.
  • Since I don't feel that we've ever made the critique service offerings particularly clear, I'd like to point out that we also critique works of longer than 9,000 words very competitively.
    • Other than the £49 offer, prose fiction or non-fiction is £3 per thousand words, with a £75 minimum charge - so 25,000 words would be your ideal entry point.
    • Short stories and articles are £40 for up to 5,000 words, £3 for each extra thousand
    • poetry, £50 for four pages of A4, £3 each extra page
    • radio or tv play, £125 for up to 60 minutes
    • stage play, £130

    Dora, it depends on how the file is delivered, what it is, etc, but we aim for a maximum of 28 days.
  • So my 108,000 word novel would cost £324 to have critiqued?
    All the competitions seem to be judged by Richard Bell, so I assume we must please him to win those, but what's the score on the critiques?
    Are they done in-house or farmed out, and if so, to whom?
    You wouldn't hand your child over to a minder without checking first!
  • [quote=Lizy]or farmed out[/quote]

    "sniffs the breeze and wonders just what does go on down at the piggery at the edge of the village"
  • I did a £50 first 9,000 words one a couple of years ago and it was sent to a reader/editor. She did a good job; money well spent.
  • Lizy, we have quite a wide range of people offering critiques, including many of our Home Study tutors (http://www.writers-online.co.uk/Home-Study/Tutors/ ) but some others too. We always try to match your manuscript up with the tutor most experienced in your field. Best bet is to contact Home Study (0113 2002917) to get more detail.
  • Just got my mini critique back today and very pleased. I got the original ms back, via email, with comments/alterations shown as notes, and a page and a half single spaced explanation of the changes plus general thoughts on the premise of the book, which were positive - hurray! There weren't many notes, which I took as a good sign, but the ones that were there were very useful and I've learned a lot just from seeing what the tutor changed. (I was also very impressed by the credentials of the tutor.) What I found most helpful were the comments on the synopsis as I loath writing them and the ones I write always sound terrible.

    I wondered whether WM could offer a pure synopsis critique, as they are such a nightmare to write and so important to a submission?
  • Good idea Lou, I'll see if we can set that up.
  • That would be a popular service.
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