Quote Originally Posted by Patty View Post
Probably opening a can of worms here, but fwiw I rather like the idea of a whole piece looked at rather than 2000 words (or whatever) at a shot. With a whole book, a review that says "I didn't finish but..." is easy to put in the second pile.

If you give me 2000 words and I read it and have no sense of story arc, or motivation, but I can see your adverb abuse, I'll critique your adverb abuse. I won't have anything to say about your story, not really.

If I have an entire book to read, I'll get past the adverb abuse, (or whatever), I will, and will see if there's something valuable in the story arc.

There's lots of paths to the mountaintop, least seems that way to me. Just not clear that we're all going for the same peak.

YMMV, 2cents
Readers, agents, and editors won't give the manuscript this sort of leeway. If I pick up a book in the store or even the library, it has a few paragraphs to win my interest. The first few hundred words can often reveal major issues of wordiness, filtering, overwriting, purple prose, and pacing. When critiquing, why continue beyond the first thousand words if the same problems and thorny issues will recur? Sure, a piece will reach a point where you need broad picture structural reviews, but the short 100-word, 500-word, and 1000-word critiques all have their place as well.