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Carol Guess: Writing Coach

Sometimes the hardest part about writing is just getting started. If you’re struggling with writer’s block or creating time to write, you’re not alone. Even though as writers we want to write, there are often real obstacles to enjoying the process. Is your apartment covered in sticky notes for a book you’re not working on? Do you struggle with finding time to write or sticking to a schedule? Are you so afraid of rejection that you don’t send out your work? Confused about how to get published and the etiquette of the process? Craft concerns can also derail your best writing habits. Maybe you’re great at mapping out a plot but feel confused about how to develop your characters. Or you’re stuck midway through a project because you don’t know what happens next and it’s daunting to write into that void. Maybe you’ve finished your memoir, and you know it’s great, but you’re afraid to publish it because it’s about your family. Maybe you’re intimidated by other writers’ success.

Coaching can help. While a manuscript consultation addresses issues with your writing itself, coaching focuses on your writing process: the pragmatic and psychological obstacles to starting, finishing, and publishing your work. If you’d like to talk through your writing struggles with someone who understands, listens, and can offer constructive guidance, I’m excited to work with you. I’m fascinated by the creative process and I’ve struggled with all of these things (and more!) myself.  Let’s talk, map out your concerns, and find a path forward.

An initial coaching session is a two-part process.

Step one: You write a 1-2 page statement describing the issues you’d like to address during our session. This will help me prepare for our call and help you name what’s holding you back.

Step two: Our session will be an hour long, by Zoom or phone, whichever you prefer. We’ll discuss your primary concerns and map out pragmatic strategies for moving ahead.

Follow-up appointments are available in 30 or 60 minute blocks.

Carol Guess

Carol Guess is the author of numerous books of poetry and prose, including Darling EndangeredDoll Studies: Forensics, and Tinderbox Lawn. In 2014 she was awarded the Philolexian Award for Distinguished Literary Achievement by Columbia University. Recent BLP titles include With Animal, co-written with Kelly Magee, and Human-Ghost Hybrid Project, co-written with Daniela Olszewska. She is Professor of English at Western Washington University.

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