Writing Coaches

Posted on March 12, 2014

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ImageWriting a book can be trickier than you think. If sticking to a schedule, summoning the creative juices, or wrestling with proper grammar are problems for you, a writing coach may be just the person you need.

There are several steps in the process of writing a book—or any kind of writing project—that can bring us to a standstill. These are issues that every writer will face, and so there is no shame in seeking out an extra bit of guidance. Such stumbling blocks might include becoming easily sidetracked, not meeting personal deadlines, punctuation and structure hindrance, lack of strong focus, mismanagement of time, slow progress, or an absence of clear goals. In these cases, and many more, writing coaches can help find a solution.

How exactly does a writing coach go about putting you on the right path? In order to understand where you’re coming from, they should be willing to sympathize with your current position and devise a foolproof strategy, one you can gradually digest.

Lane Diamond (http://lanediamond.com/2013/09/what-does-a-writing-coach-do/), a managing publisher and editor, describes his process when working with a client. He covers the fundamentals: content, in which plot, characterization, etc., are examined; grammar, where familiarization with the rules is stressed; structure, where he demonstrates the great influence this has on a reader’s perception of your writing; and style, of which he states “…a Writing Coach’s job is to teach you how to enhance your writing while remaining true to who you are.” Very importantly, he seeks to work with clients in the installation and practice of good writing habits.

Working with a coach can be fairly flexible, but it is a partnership in which both members must be invested. The first stage will consist of meeting with your coach, where you will detail your writing goals and establish a writing criterion. Afterwards, you will regularly send material you have written, as well as inform your coach of any progress or struggles you’re encountering. Your coach, in turn, will send edited material back to you, along with constructive feedback. He or she may also be able to suggest additional resources, which will serve to further your writing objectives, sums up Melissa Donovan, of Writing Forward (http://www.writingforward.com/services/writing-coach).

Starla J. King, of OutWriteLiving (http://outwriteliving.com/writing-coaching/), adds that a relationship with a writing coach can also include phone conversations, “homework” exercises, email updates, and the journaling of ideas and thoughts.

A writing coach can be located in a few different ways. You can start by asking friends or other personal acquaintances who they might recommend. Do a little Google-searching as well. Students can approach their professors or visit their school’s writing centers. Many coaches are happy to receive emails and will often offer sample coaching sessions, free of cost.

With all a writing coach has to offer, perhaps the best thing they can provide is encouragement, which, as many writers will attest, is an invaluable contribution.  

Chelsey Edwards, Writer and Editor, Asta Publications

http://www.astapublications.com

Asta Publications has a long history of helping writers tell their stories and get published. Since 2004, Asta Publications has helped hundreds of authors bring their book concepts to life and we are ready to help you too! Our dedication to our authors is unmatched. We deliver first-class products and services that are accurate, high quality, and exceed our authors’ expectations.

 

Further Reading:

  1. Marla Beck Coaching for Writers: http://www.coachmarla.com
  2. The Urban Muse: http://www.urbanmusewriter.com/2012/02/should-you-hire-a-writing-coach-or-mentor.html
  3. eWritingCoach: http://ewritingcoach.com/where-to-find-a-writing-coach/
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