If you want your manuscript thoroughly reviewed by a professional who can pick up on story inconsistencies, problems with character development and so on before you send it out to a publisher, you will need to hire someone to provide a literary critique. The person who critiques your work will also give you an overall picture of your manuscripts potential as a finished book.
This person will evaluate your writing, taking into consideration such things as the motivation and depth of your characters, plot creation, use of voice, flow of conversation, areas in your work that drag on and your overall strengths and weaknesses. A good critique will show examples of how you can fix up your manuscript as well. This can be presented in either MS word or PDF form.
Some people who write literary critiques will do the rewrites for you, making the necessary embellishments, cuts and revisions, so getting a literary critique of your manuscript can be expensive depending on what you’re looking for. I am aware of one person on the web who charges upwards of $850 for a critique and another who charges $2,500 for editing and rewriting. When I am hired on as editor of a book, I charge a flat rate per page for editing and provide a critique for an extra $100, which is significantly more economical than the going rate.
If you opt for a simple critique of say two or three pages, expect to wait from four to six weeks for completion. For more in depth critiques, it can take from four to six months. While you might not think having a critique done is important, it can be most useful later on, as a good one can be sent along with your manuscript to publishers and agents.