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Use the page 99 test to see how your book rates


Open the book to page 99, and the quality of the whole will be revealed to you,” Ford Madox Ford

You can’t always judge a book by its cover, but you might consider judging a book by its page 99.  While you probably know how important first lines are in grabbing the reader’s attention, Ford Madox Ford believed that page 99 was the true test.

Maybe because by page 99, the book could be lagging. However, if page 99 is gripping, it just might be a page turner.

As writers, we know so well that the first line, the first page, even the first 50 pages are crucial to attract the attention of an agent, editor, publisher. Middles, however, don’t get as much attention. And some writers find it difficult to maintain their momentum. Evaluating page 99 just might be a more accurate indicator of a book’s success.

A website,, offers you a chance to test your own page 99. Post your page 99 and you can see if readers of the site would choose to turn the page and read on… or not. Page 99 readers will also rate whether they would buy your book —  without knowing who you are or if you’ve been published. You can make revisions if you choose and upload the changed page. The service is free.

So…how does page 99 of your manuscript rate?

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