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Get Your Fiction Manuscript Past the Gatekeeper

9 Story Revision & Editing Techniques to Get Your Novel Published
(9 reviews)
3,110 students
Created by


CourseMarks Score®







Platform: Udemy
Video: 2h 4m
Language: English
Next start: On Demand

Table of contents


The key to getting your novel published is not just having a good story – but a polished, well-revised story.
Paying a developmental editor to perform a professional edit on your manuscript could cost you anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000. Investing in yourself now on how to professionally self-edit your own work will fast track you toward publication and save you significant money.
This course will cover what you need to improve your novel writing and editing skills to create a better manuscript that can catch the eye of an agent, editor, publisher, or reader—while saving thousands of dollars on story developmental editing services.
You’ll discover 9 story building issues that could be preventing YOU from getting published—or capturing a reader’s attention—and the techniques to fix them. PLUS, you’ll get direct access to my writing and editing toolbox AND my 10 years of author experience having worked with multiple agents, editors, authors, and publishers.
Discover how to create a better novel by focusing on these 9 story development areas:
· How to Build Suspense
· Characters that Grab You
· Sidekick Characters
· 8 Steps to an Agent, a Publisher, and a 2-Book Deal
· Revision Resources
· Course Guide
Lessons include:
* Mistakes to avoid and techniques to fix them
* Story examples to reinforce the lesson
* Assignments to strengthen your story development

What I am sharing with you in this course is based on ten years of experience working with privately hired developmental editors, editorial staff at several publishers, editors on submission, author mentors, and literary agents—as well as being an intern at a NYC literary agency.
As a literary agency intern, I read manuscripts for an agent that she requested from queries. My job was to let her know if the book was a story she should consider. Was it a good story? Did it hold my attention? Did I stop reading? If so where, and why? I had the power to recommend the book to her or not. 99% of the time I did not. Why? Because these stories were not ready for publication.
They may each have held a GOOD STORY IDEA but were plagued with issues that prevented them from being a GREAT STORY that would resonate with readers. Issues that prevented them from getting past the gatekeeper. Issues that I’ve been guilty of myself and have worked hard to overcome.
In this course, I will cover these exact issues that could be preventing YOU from getting published.
* How to write and revise compelling manuscripts for publication and sale
* How to recognize and correct the nine most common manuscript mistakes
* How to increase your knowledge of how good storytelling works
Improving your self-editing techniques is one of the best ways to get your novel publication-ready and get it in the hands of readers.
Submitting a well-written and engaging story to an agent, editor, publisher, or reader can help you stand out from the thousands of manuscripts that get rejected each day.
You’ve invested a lot of time, energy, and emotion into your book—investing in improving your storytelling skills can ensure your book captures the spotlight.
By the end of this course you will be confident in knowing how to write and revise your novel to craft an engaging story.
What’s included in Get Your Manuscript Past the Gatekeeper:
A 9-Step Author Revision Process to Write and Revise with Confidence and Skill
What world building involves and why it’s important for any story.
How to ground the reader in your world and what details to include—and avoid.

Create a smooth story flow from one element to the next to keep the reader turning the pages.
The importance of “letting things resonate” for a deeper impact.

Why varying sentence type can improve readability and keep your reader interested.
How to avoid bogging your story down in repetition and description.

Eliminate histrionics and overly dramatic expression.
“Show” techniques that can create an emotional connection with readers.

How to select what to reveal—and what to exclude— to keep your story active.
Effective ways to include backstory that don’t bog down the action.

How voice is key for readers to connect with characters.
Create dimensional characters to care about.
The importance of focusing on emotional turning points.
Introduce sidekick characters to support your main character.

Why every line of dialogue is key to the story.
Craft compelling dialogue that moves the story forward and reveals character.

Hook readers with your story promise and why your story must be more than just “a good idea”.
A guide to ensure each chapter drives your story forward and keeps it on track.

How to achieve the right pacing and tension to evoke emotion in your characters and readers.
Create effective pacing and tension that can build suspense for any genre.
Balance action so your story isn’t too frantic or too bogged down.

You will learn

✓ To write your story stronger and tighter with more emotional impact to help you get past the gatekeeper and on the way to publication and reader satisfaction.
✓ To write and revise compelling manuscripts for publication and sale.
✓ To recognize and correct the nine most common manuscript mistakes.
✓ To increase your knowledge of how good storytelling works through professional novel editing skills.


• You are a writer who wants to draft and revise a novel.
• You seek publication in fiction for any genre and for any audience.
• You want to strengthen your writing craft and make your stories stand out while saving thousands of dollars on editing services.
• You are a dedicated learner with a commitment to improving your writing craft.

This course is for

• Emerging authors who want to self-publish and sell their novels on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iStore, and other publishing platforms.
• Writers who want to write and revise their first novel.
• Writers who seek publication through literary agents and traditional publishing houses.
Author, Teacher, Speaker
My passion is inspiring and motivating writers to follow their own unique path. I love to help writers elevate themselves in their writing craft, embrace promotion, boost confidence, and learn how to set themselves up for lifelong author success.
I’ve taught hundreds of writers since 2013 at conferences, workshops, retreats, seminars, and school visits about writing craft and marketing — and now reaching even more students with online courses.
What would you like to learn?How to improve your writing techniques?How to build your author platform?How to market your books?How to build a community of industry influencers?
If you want to do any of these things, just enroll in my courses. You have a 30-day money back guarantee if you don’t like it.
I want to show you how to be a better writer, be a better promoter, be a better networker, and live the writing and publishing life you dreamed of.
Check out my courses and enroll today!
Donna’s Full Bio:
I’m the author of the middle grade adventure Joshua and The Lightning Road, which the Midwest Book Review called, “A heart-pounding thrill ride full of unexpected twists and turns from start to finish”. I’m also the author of the follow up, Joshua and the Arrow Realm, and the bestselling paranormal suspense Element Trilogy for adults. In addition, I write the popular Unicorn Island series and regularly present as a guest author at schools.
I love teaching at writing conferences on marketing and craft, am the creator of several online courses for writers at Udemy, and a member of the blog, From the Mixed-Up Files of Middle Grade Authors. When I’m not writing you can find me on Twitter or Facebook where I love to share all things about outdoor adventures and children’s books. I’ve lived from England as a child, to Hawaii as a U.S. Navy photographer, and have had a long career in corporate marketing. I’m represented by Liza Fleissig with the Liza Royce Agency in NYC. Visit me at donnagalanti(dot)com.

Praise for Author, Teacher, and Speaker Donna GalantiKate Brandes Author of The Promise of Pierson Orchard
“Donna shared strategies with me that not only helped lead to the publication of my first novel, but also helped me secure my dream agent. I have followed her expert advice on positioning myself and my first novel during the all-important marketing period before and after publication.”
Kathryn Craft Author of The Far End of Happy and owner of Writing-Partner
“Donna Galanti sets learners at ease with her accessible demeanor, confident knowledge, and well-organized presentations. In her marketing lecture, she helped daunted introverts accept that social media and publishing go hand-in-hand for today’s writer, and that ideally, platform building, like writing, deserves years of pre-publication devotion. For beginners starting out or authors catching up, her clear, step-by-step suggestions untangle what can seem like an overwhelming jumble of marketing tasks.”
Christa Tinari National speaker and author of Create a Culture of Kindness in Middle School
“Thank you for sharing so much information to help newer authors like myself. You’ve got so many insights that are invaluable to writers and hopeful authors-to-be. It was a joy to benefit from your passion for helping other authors be successful. To writers: don’t miss Donna’s class!”
Browse all courses by on Coursemarks.
Platform: Udemy
Video: 2h 4m
Language: English
Next start: On Demand

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