|Sunset over the water (Malta)|
Have you been thinking about working with a writing coach? Here are some tips on finding the best one for you and your writing.
Sometimes folks giggle when I say this, but I think finding a good writing coach is like finding a good therapist. You need to find someone who challenges you and leads you to new discoveries. You should trust the person and, of course, like and respect them, too. A writing coach might be perfect for your friend and her work but a bad fit for you and your work. And that's ok.
I recommend starting off small if you have someone in mind. You might take a short workshop with the person and see if you like their approach. Or you might request a short phone or in-person consultation. I am happy to schedule a twenty minute phone call with a possible writing coach client before our first formal appointment, just to make sure we are a good fit.
If you aren't sure how to find someone, you might contact a local writer's center, bookstore or university to see if they can recommend someone. Writers who teach often also work privately with writers. A quick internet search will turn up some names, too. You can work with someone locally in-person or call/video conference with someone elsewhere.
When you meet with the person, don't hesitate to ask if the coach wouldn't mind sharing some names of folks they've worked with as references (the coach might need to check with the clients first, so give them some time.) Take some time to read the person's published work, too.
When you first talk, the coach will probably ask you a lot of questions about your work, experience, goals, favorite books and more. You should also ask the coach questions, mostly about the process and the coach's expectations. This is a period to learn more about each other and see if you can come up with a plan that works well for both of you.
Remember that the coach is also deciding if she will be a good fit for you. There have been times that I've met with writers who are working on projects that I don't fully understand because of the subject matter. In these cases, I might recommend another coach to the writer. This isn't a rejection, but rather an effort to help the writer find the best writing coach.
Trust yourself and your gut in this process. If you like someone and think you will benefit from working together, say so. If you don't feel like the person is a good fit, then keep looking for the right person.
If you think I can help you and your work as a writing coach, let's talk more. You can read more about my writing coach services and what happens during a writing coach appointment. Email me to set up your first consultation (chloemiller(at)gmail(dot)com. I will have slots for a few new clients starting in mid-March.