An editorial assessment is the (usually first) professional evaluation of a piece of writing. The purpose is to identify the biggest strengths and weaknesses of the book and resolve as much as possible in the big-picture. This is often provided to prepare for developmental editing, which is content editing with a much finer-tooth comb. That service is best used when the problems that can be self-edited are already completed. The editor (yours truly) reads through the book and provides a report detailing what the writer should adjust, revise, and rewrite before their next stage. Hot topics usually addressed include focus, organization, method, elaboration, reduction, and loose ends.