Is there a book inside you, longing to get out?
Do you want to share your story, to use it to help others?
Is your story a big part of the work you want to do?
Do you need help to find it, to shape it and to get it on the page?
Do you long for a safe space in which to write, for someone to hold you accountable, for guidance on structure and craft?
Do you want help sorting out what to include and what to leave out?
Would you like to learn how to build scenes, include dialogue, blend past experiences with present insights?
Do you want help finding your blind spots, overcoming resistance to exploring the painful places right at the heart of your story, healing and sharing them?
If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, read on. I may be able to help.
Our work together
I work in a dual role, as coach and mentor. As a coach, I’ll help you dig deep, heal and find the full scope of the story you want to tell. As a mentor, I’ll help you learn how to tell your story, and I’ll help you develop and maintain the discipline required to keep going all the way to the end.
We start with grounding exercises and a discussion of the project as the you see it, working our way to a clear, shared understanding of the project’s purpose and the themes/topics you want to explore. In each session, we discuss your progress and troubleshoot any struggles, and we discuss a short piece of writing you’ve shared and I’ve read and prepared notes on.
Depending on your experience and the project you are undertaking, we may work on uncovering material that you have forgotten about and reaching a deeper understanding of who you were at different stages of your life. We will likely work on thoughts and feelings that are holding you back from telling parts of your story. This work can be deeply rewarding, as it can bring healing to your life and richness to your writing at the same time.
We also work on craft. Many people need help structuring their story, giving it a compelling shape and paring down content to what really belongs. Some people need to learn how to write scenes, how to figure out what goes in them and what doesn’t and how to transition from scene to scene. Often, we work on point of view, as many writers slip outside themselves and lose the richness and precision of their own viewpoint on what is unfolding on the page.
Along the way, I’ll tuck in some lessons on mechanics/grammar/punctuation, formatting, as needed, so that you come way with the ability to produce a professional manuscript ready for submission to agents or publishers or for self-publishing. This part of our work will show up mostly in notes on the writing you send me, only arising in our sessions when you want further clarification.
I usually work with people in blocks of six sessions. Some meet their goals in that time, usually spread over 3 to 4 months. Others sign up for a second block. Others work on their own for a while after the first block, and come back for a single session or two or for a second block when they have most of their project done, and need help for the final push and for guidance as they begin the tough task of revision in preparation for submission or self-publishing.
Is this the year you write the book that has been languishing inside your head and heart for years? If so, and you’d like a little help, get in touch and we can schedule a complimentary 30-minute chat to see if we would be a good fit for each other.
I am a Martha Beck certified life coach and the author of 10 published books including an award-winning memoir. I worked as an in-house editor for five years, and I now teach in UBC’s creative writing program and coach and mentor people just like you.
What others have said
- Maggie’s experience as an author and writing coach has given me the courage to finally write my memoir. Her guidance has helped me see more clearly how to structure my book, stay true to my purpose, and tell a story that will engage the reader. I know I couldn’t do this without her expertise and dedicated commitment to my project. Thank you, Maggie
Jeri Ross, MPH
Licensed Health Educator & Entrepreneur
- Without Maggie’s help I would still have that nagging feeling of time going by while I putter in useless circles, managing to get to the end of every day somehow still without getting to the things that really matter. As it is, I make daily headway in ways that measurably improve my quality of life, and as such the quality of life of the people around me. Thank you, Maggie!
Lieve Barnett, Ballard, WA