Coaching is not intended for the hobby writer, but for the determined writer who truly wants to make writing into a professional career. Writers who go into coaching are hellbent on publishing…and the writing coach provides the knowledge, the encouragement, and the correct way to go about it.
In coaching, you will be matched one on one with an instructor. Every week, you will hand in pages to this instructor, up to 20 pages if you are working on fiction or creative nonfiction, or up to ten poems if you are working on poetry. Your coach will go over these pages thoroughly, providing you with a line-by-line edit and an overall thematic critique. You will meet with your coach for an hour every week, face to face if possible, or via the phone or a private online chatroom if you don’t live in the area. Through this close work with a professional writer, you will truly learn the way to publication.
As your work progresses, your coach will guide you through the submission process. In the case of short pieces, the coach will help you with proper manuscript set-up, writing the cover letter, and researching the appropriate markets. For novels and book-length memoirs, the coach will help you write your cover letter and your synopsis, and will work with you to develop a list of at least twenty possible agents or editors.
With coaching, you pay $300 a month. A “month” equals four meetings. So for example, if a week arises where you are sick, on vacation, or have a previous commitment, or where the coach experiences one of these, it does not count against you. The “month” continues until all four meetings are done.
Coaching is not for the faint of heart, and it’s definitely not for those who are only playing at writing. If you are serious about your work and about success, then coaching is where you need to be.