Personal training for the written word

Every year more than half a million books are written. Can you imagine how many more are started, planned, discussed but never finished?

What’s the difference between those incredible writers who put the final period on a book? More often than not: help.

I learned two things early:

  1. Everybody needs an editor
  2. Nobody writes alone

OK, I’m sure there are exceptions, but in two decades of publishing my work, I’ve never, ever, not once, seen any.

Consider this: When I say personal trainer what comes to mind? A buff guy or gal, in a gym or perhaps outside with a yoga mat, enthusiastically cheering you on. Right?

I’m pretty sure you didn’t think some geeky guy with glasses banging away on a keyboard in the “edits” section of Microsoft Office, right?

A personal trainer in a gym maps your regular routines, instructing you and encourages you in a coordinated effort with a specific physical outcome as a result.

A personal training of the written word does pretty much the same thing, by mapping your regular routine, offering instruction and encouragement with specific physical outcome (a book or a blog or a proposal or a script, etc.) as a result.

So I think it’s time rethink the premises of personal training, especially if you want to be one of those in the coming year who actually finish and publish. The work of getting in shape–be it physically, spiritually or simply your writing–is pretty similar. It takes routine, discipline, coaching and encouragement, all of which every writer needs at some time or another. Every, single, one –at least among any writer I’ve ever met.

I routinely seek out help early and often. I pay for editors just as people pay me. I enjoy reviewing proposals or first chapters or whatever you have in rough draft form. I’ll give you an honest evaluation that includes bad habits, technical problems, plot breakdowns, structure issues, character development and more.

These consultations have been the most critical investments in my projects I have ever made. It’s a service I like to pass on to others, which is why I have begun offering free consultations to writers in search of a coach.

Learn more about my coaching style here and connect with me via our contact page so we can get to work on your book actually becoming a book, with words and pages, instead of that thing “I always wanted” to do.


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