Writing Coaching

I work with writers to help them find their voice, grow in confidence, and see projects through.

Maybe:

  • You’d love to write a book to grow your business and raise your profile. You need help taking the plunge and getting started.
  • You’re working on your first novel. You need support and feedback to help you get through the messy middle and reach “the end”.
  • You’ve been writing for a while, but you feel like you’re stuck. You need a fresh perspective on your writing to help you go forward.

Wherever you are right now, I’m here to help you move forward faster.

I’m not going to edit your work for you or tell you to follow some rigid writing process. Instead, I’ll help you develop your own voice, I’ll show you tweaks and improvements you could consider, and I’ll support you as you figure out the easiest, most enjoyable way for you to write.

We can dig deep into the nitty-gritty details of word choice, take a zoomed-out and strategic approach, or both. How you use your coaching time is completely up to you.

How My Coaching Works

I offer both “kickstart” and “ongoing” coaching … but everyone begins with a kickstart!

The “kickstart” is designed to help you get moving again (or moving faster). It involves:

Call 1: An initial 20 minute chat about your writing goals and current project(s), before coming up with an action plan.

Call 2: A 45 minute call where I give you feedback on a piece of your writing and we discuss the bigger picture of your project.

Call 3: A 45 minute call where we go through another piece of your writing, and come up with your ongoing plan.

Between calls, I’ll email you every week to check how your writing is going.

After Call 3, you might feel that you’d benefit from the accountability and support of ongoing coaching. We can keep having 45 minute calls for as long as you want, as frequently (or infrequently) at you want.

How Do the Calls Work?

You book each call at a time to suit you. I have a range of times available to suit (hopefully!) all timezones, but if you can’t find a good time on my calendar, I’ll be happy to work with you to find a better time slot.

The first 20 minute call is so we can get to know one another a little. This is where you tell me about your writing and about what you’re hoping to get out of coaching.

If after this first call, you feel that my coaching isn’t a good fit for you, I’ll refund you in full.

Then, before each 45 minute call, you can send me up to 2,000 words of your work in advance. I ask for this two days ahead, unless we’ve pre-arranged something different, so that I have plenty of time to review it in detail. I’ll mark up your work with comments and suggestions.

For the call itself, we talk on Google Meet (you don’t need to install anything, just click on a link). You can have your camera on or off. We’ll talk about how your writing is going and how you’re feeling about it, and I’ll take you through my feedback on your piece. We can also talk about the bigger picture of your project.

Towards the end of the call, we’ll come up with next steps: your action plan to keep up the momentum.

How Much Does it Cost?

The whole kickstart package (all 3 calls, plus my review of 2 pieces of your work) costs $250 / £200.

After that, ongoing 45 minute calls cost $125 / £100 each. This includes me reviewing up to 2,000 words of your work each time.

Note: These prices are likely to go up soon! If you’re not quite ready for coaching yet, you can book in now at the current price and we can do our initial call in a month or two.

Frequently Asked Questions

You’re more than welcome to email me (ali@aliventures.com) with any questions about my writing coaching. Here are a few answers for you to common questions I get:

I hate talking on Zoom … can we use email instead?

Yes! I’m happy to offer coaching by email. Just drop me a line and we’ll figure out a price and structure to suit you. Here’s what Alex Blackwell says about my email coaching:

AlexBlackwellWhile one-on-one conversations are preferred, sometimes the best we can do is use email to communicate. And to be honest, Ali’s email-only coaching service is as helpful as a conversation with her.

She helped me edit two important posts recently. Ali took great care with my content. She provided helpful and easy-to-follow comments as well as a large dose of encouragement. Not only did she improve my content; she taught me a few things, too – all in the course of a few emails. So, if you don’t have to speak with Ali, then an email-only relationship with her will prove to be just as productive.

Alex Blackwell

Is there a minimum coaching length?

Everyone begins with the “kickstart” package (an initial 20 minute call, then two 45 minute calls). This gives us long enough to really dig into your writing and for you to make significant progress.

After this, you can choose to carry on with coaching for as long as you like. You can stop at any time, there’s no minimum committment.

What kind of feedback will I get on my work?

In our initial 20 minute call, I’ll check what sort of feedback would be most helpful for you.

In general, I always focus first on what’s working well … because often writers don’t recognise their own strengths. Then, I’ll note any overall issues that might benefit from some tweaks (e.g. if the pacing is off, or the structure isn’t quite there yet).

Throughout your piece itself, I’ll add comments relating to specific paragraphs, sentences, or even individual words where I (a) think something is working really well or (b) have a suggestion about something you could change to make your work even better or to bring out your voice more strongly.

You’ll get all my notes to keep after the call, in case you want to refer back to anything. You’re also very welcome to record our calls if you like.

What to Expect (in Clients’ Own Words)

Here’s what a few clients have said about my coaching.

Ann Godridge says…

anngodridge

I was a bit nervous about talking about my work in progress – as if it would disappear as soon as I tried to explain what I was trying to do. And there’s an underlying reluctance to admit just how seriously I am taking this – it is my life’s great ambition after all, and I am only happy admitting that when I look at it out of the corner of one eye and not head on. And I was quite intimidated by the prospect of talking to someone who knows what they are doing – someone professional.

I needn’t have worried. Ali was easy to talk to and the process of working with her was simple – and very rewarding. […]

Her detailed notes on my extracts will become a resource I can go back to again and again. She pointed out some areas where I’ve done a whole range of clumsy things with dialogue, and where I’ve again slipped into my usual habit of taking emotional scenes offstage. She’s given me a lot to think about – and was very encouraging too. […]

One thing is certain, if I get stuck again, I will have no hesitation in going back to Ali, and when I’ve finished the first draft and knocked it into a shape a little, I plan to send her the whole thing.

Ann Godridge, in Should you work with a writing coach? on Birds on the Blog

Milo McLaughlin says…

milomclaughlin

As a writer I sometimes can’t see the wood for the trees when it comes to my own work. So when I had the chance to get Ali’s advice I jumped at the chance, as I’ve been reading her work for quite a while on both her own website and on loads of other great blogs.

Ali’s advice is thorough and extremely constructive, and she helped me see how one of my half-finished blog posts could be turned into a whole series of posts, or even an e-book.

After one session I was motivated to start up a new blog project which had been festering on the back-burner for months, and after our second session I had the confidence to start submitting my writing for guest posts on other blogs. It was exactly the kick start I needed.

Milo McLaughlin

Silver Huang says…

It has been amazing. With Ali’s support and patience, I’ve made more headway with my blog and writing in three weeks than I had in the past three months.

She gives clear and actionable advice that can be applied immediately in my writing, is very professional and objective with her feedback and above all, is warm and shows genuine interest and concern.

I am very grateful to Ali and would be quick to recommend her to anyone who’s facing difficulties with their writing, technical, emotional or otherwise!

Silver Huang

Karl Staib says…

I consider myself a good writer and never really thought about using a writing coach to help me get to the next level. I made the leap with Ali and I’m so glad I did. She gave me insight into how I could improve my writing that my professors and writing clubs were never able to do. If you are a solid writer, but need help to get to the next level – Ali is your best bet.

My favorite aspect of Ali’s coaching was her ability to help me find clarity in my writing voice. She helped me step back and look at my writing with fresh eyes. Her coaching has already helped improve traffic to my blog, which is exactly what I wanted.

Karl Staib

Cath Duncan says…

cathduncanMy business relies on a lot of content generation – for teaching and for marketing, and there are times when I really want an expert eye to run over my writing and make sure that it sparkles with clarity and makes an impact, and doesn’t add to the deluge of “infocrap” out there.

And as a solopreneur who’s handling all of the functions in my business and has so many other decisions and details to take care of, it’s such a relief to receive my work back from Ali, full of notes, corrections and sound advice, and to implement her advice and see my writing come to life… without the time-consuming scrutiny and agony I would usually drag myself through as I try to polish up my work myself.

Ali’s kind of specific, clear and frank feedback is a rare god-send!

Cath Duncan, Bottom-line Bookclub

Ali’s Writing Experience

I’m a freelance content writer, and my work has been read by hundreds of thousands of people. Chances are, you’re one of them!

As well as ghost writing for lots of clients, I’ve written for plenty of large writing-related sites, including Copyblogger, ProBlogger, Daily Writing Tips, Daily Blog Tips, Men with Pens and Write to Done.

I’m the author of Publishing E-Books for Dummies in Wiley’s iconic For Dummies series. I’ve also self-published three novels (the Lycopolis trilogy) and a novella, and I’ve written prize-winning short stories..

I have an M.A. in Creative and Life Writing at Goldsmiths College, University of London (2010)

I also have a B.A. (Hons) in English from Cambridge University (2006)

One of the things I love most is working with writers, supporting them, and seeing their projects come to fruition. As your coach, I’ll be cheering you along every step of the way. 🙂

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