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Archived Author Help > Using a writing coach

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message 1: by Marguerite (new)

Marguerite Mooers (margueritemooers) | 16 comments I am a self published author and now after three novels I am beginning to feel the need for a wise reader and sometime cheerleader. I am wondering if anyone out there has used a person like this and what was your experience. Thanks for your input.
Peggy


message 2: by Ken (new)

Ken (kendoyle) | 364 comments I have a family member who is also an indie author. It was definitely helpful for my first book to exchange notes and discuss the struggles of writing/publishing.

There are professional writing coaches, but I don't think I would be willing to sign up for a paid service. If you can find a writing buddy and both of you benefit from the exchange, I think that's the best way to do it.


message 3: by J. (new)

J. Rose | 10 comments Hi Marguerite!

I would not have a completed book WITHOUT 2 readers and 2 professional edits. I actually ended up taking a fiction writing class to test some of the material and met 2 ladies that started a private reading/writing group with me and we all helped each other. When their writing fizzled out, the group became about finishing my book and I was so blessed! We met twice a month, I would give them a chapter, they would dissect it, and we would discuss it and usually argue lol because they got to know my characters so well they could challenge me. Without that input plus a professional to do a story edit once I completed the first draft, I would be nowhere fast.

The short... take a writing class and after it ends pull some of the people you liked and respected and start your own writing group to support each other. It's so necessary and I am struggling now to find more people for Book 2. I know I can't write it without critical readers and I am also in the market right now!!! lol I need to follow my own advice and take another class! Then hire a story editor and then before publishing get a line edit. At least one of each before your own finishing touches.


message 4: by Marguerite (new)

Marguerite Mooers (margueritemooers) | 16 comments Thanks for your comments. I do belong to a writing group, but all of those except one are not writing for publication, that is they are writing for family members and so they don't worry so much about whether a public will like their stuff. I have taken on-line writing classes from Writers Digest and most of the time the teacher focused on the mechanics of writing rather than the content, so I was unhappy with the classes. Finding someone who can understand what I, am trying to do, can be a challenge. I think I tend to overplot, to put too much information into my stories and I need a wise reader to say (make this simpler, or this is not going to sell, or whatever. You are lucky to have had a group that will give you honest feedback and help you make your writing better.


message 5: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth Calder (tigerlilly324) | 6 comments I read somewhere, or perhaps it was a comment from my editor, that once you have completed almost the final draft consider sending it to at least 10 people you know who will be honest and willing to critique your work. They should be people that aren't going to simply give you rave reviews because of your friendship but read the book as if it was authored by a stranger. Kind of tough but I believe necessary.


message 6: by Mike (new)

Mike Williamson | 19 comments Marguerite wrote: "I am a self published author and now after three novels I am beginning to feel the need for a wise reader and sometime cheerleader. I am wondering if anyone out there has used a person like this an..."

Hi Marguerite, I found the following bunch very useful, but I can't remember off-hand how much they cost.

Tel: 020 8941 8123 * e-mail jacqui@thewritingcoach.co.uk
http://www.thewritingcoach.co.uk

Good luck.


message 7: by Zam (new)

Zam Loyal | 2 comments I feel you, Marguerite. Many of my friends and family are simply not the reader type, or if they are, they're too busy to read large novels like mine.

At one point I hired someone to critique and give me helpful tips (strictly private, I wouldn't pay for public reviews), but while their positive feedback was very much a morale boost, I could never scratch away that "mental itch" which said "he's only complimenting your work so you keep hiring him".

Finding someone that's willing to be that friend who reads your work for free and offers deep, insightful, honest, critique is kind of like striking gold.

In the meantime, if you're better than I am at scratching away that mental itch I mentioned, then a paid writing coach could be a good option for that emotional boost that one sometimes needs to keep on writing.


message 8: by Marguerite (new)

Marguerite Mooers (margueritemooers) | 16 comments Thanks for your kind words. I do know what you mean about the compliments. You would like someone to be honest, and more importantly that their honesty meshes with what you think are the issues you struggle with. Sort of like a first date--you want them to 'get you' in your writing.
I have been very lucky in my readers, but even with a good first reader I find that there are things that I might have changed had someone mentioned them to me before the book was published.


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